EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 275 - March 13, 2002     2 of 3

Sotheby's Holdings Releases Year 2001 Financial Results

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Sotheby's Holdings, Inc., the parent company of Sotheby's worldwide live and online auction businesses, art-related financial services and real estate brokerage activities, announced 2001 financial results on Tuesday. For the year ended December 31, 2001 the Company reported total revenues of $336.2 million, compared to $397.8 million for the previous year. Net loss for full year 2001 was $41.7 million, compared to a net loss of $189.7 million for 2000.

Total Auction Sales (hammer price plus buyer's premium) decreased 16% to $1.6 billion in full year 2001. Auction Sales in North America decreased 22% to $809.5 million, principally due to increased competition for consignments and uncertainty in the global economy following the events of September 11th. In Europe, Auction Sales decreased 8% to $723.1 million. Excluding the unfavorable impact of foreign currency translations, Auction Sales in Europe decreased 4%.

"2001 was a tough year for Sotheby's, one in which we accomplished some notable successes," said Bill Ruprecht, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sotheby's Holdings, Inc. "Our material liabilities relating to antitrust matters are largely behind us, we made very significant progress in the reduction of expenses through our restructuring efforts, and we entered into a strategic alliance with eBay that we announced in January, which will further cut our Internet operating costs and boost revenue growth. Most importantly, through our retention programs we have retained all of our key employees, thus continuing to offer the best art and art market expertise in the world." Mr. Ruprecht added, "We do expect a return to profitability on the operating income line in 2002, despite the residual burdens of both retention costs and higher than historic interest costs."

Sotheby's Holdings, Inc. operates in 38 countries, with principal salesrooms located in New York and London. The Company also regularly conducts auctions in 14 other salesrooms around the world, including Australia, Hong Kong, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Singapore. Sotheby's Holdings, Inc. is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.


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Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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