Having postponed its traditional April and May watch auctions till June and July respectively – no doubt with fingers crossed and a quiet prayer – as a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Sotheby’s has just announced Watches Weekly, an ongoing series of online-only watch auctions starting April 1, 2020. The auctions will take place on a rolling basis, with each sale lasting a week, then followed by the next sale, and so on.
Each auction be centred around a theme while being relatively compact – the first sale is made up of 19 watches by Rolex and Audemars Piguet. The subsequent auctions will be Patek Philippe Design and Horology from April 8-15, then something for bargain hunters, Swiss Wristwatches with no reserve on April 15-22.
Sam Hines, Sotheby’s global head of watches, explained the move in the announcement: “[Clients] are also increasingly confident [of buying] important pieces online. This was demonstrated last week, when we set a new record for a watch sold online at Sotheby’s [162,500 Swiss francs for a Rolex Daytona “Paul Newman” ref. 6262].”
According to Mr Hines, the newly-announced online auctions will “complement the calendar of live sales and other online auctions already planned for the rest of the year”, implying that the rest of the auction calendar will proceed as planned.
Watches Weekly makes Sotheby’s the first mainstream watch auctioneer – its peers are Christie’s, Phillips, and to a lesser degree, Antiquorum – to stage frequent online-only auctions as a result of the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
To view the online auctions, visit Sotheby’s.com.
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