MarketWatch summarized Sotheby’s earnings call thus:
Sotheby’s reported a profit of $91.7 million, or $1.33 a share, versus a year-earlier profit of $85.4 million, or $1.24 a share.
Revenue ticked up 0.3% to $304.9 million, as the commission margin improved to 15.9% from 15.3%.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters projected a per-share profit of $1.37 on revenue of $318 million.
Expenses increased 2.4% as the company continues to invest in expanding its digital media offerings and presence in emerging markets such as China.
Sotheby’s highlighted the first half of 2013 this way:
CONSOLIDATED SALES, AUCTION SALES AND PRIVATE SALES ALL UP OVER THE SAME PERIOD IN 2012
- Consolidated Sales totaled $3.14 billion
- Auction Sales totaled $2.57 billion
- The global bidding activity of Asian collectors at Sotheby’s in the first half of 2013 has already surpassed that of the whole of 2012
- Sotheby’s is celebrating its 40th anniversary in Asia this year
- Having become the first international fine art auction house in China, further information regarding Sotheby’s activities in Beijing will be announced this autumn
- 65% of clients who transacted with us privately in the first half of 2013, did so for the first time
- Already in the second half of the year, several significant private transactions have been concluded
- S|2, the private sale and gallery arm of Sotheby’s Contemporary Art department, will host concurrent shows in New York, London and Hong Kong this autumn, following the opening of a new, dedicated space in London
SOTHEBY’S IS A PIONEER IN BROADENING THE ART MARKET
- In the first half of 2013, we have seen clients participating with us in a number of new ways and in a number of new categories
- Nearly 40% of all bids executed in the first half of 2013 came from existing clients who were bidding in a new category for the first time
- More than 30% of all clients participating in our global salesrooms registered for their paddle on our website
- In London in June, one in ten registered bidders in our Contemporary Evening sale came from the new markets
- Sales at Sotheby’s France totaled more than $137 million, the best first half result since the Company became the first international auction house to hold sales in France more than a decade ago
- Sotheby’s recent Old Master Painting sales in London brought over $60 million with one third of the works selling to Russian buyers and record numbers of registrants coming from Asia and the Middle East