Bonhams for Sale?

Buried about four quick posts down on the Financial Times art market update is a quick couple of paragraphs about equity firms bidding for Bonhams.  Given the record profits from last year, it might be a good time for the current owners to cash out.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out and if sold, for what price.

The Financial Times reports
Could Bonhams change hands? A number of private equity firms, led by investment bank Greenhill, have submitted first-round bids for the 200-year-old auction house, which reported profits of £25m last year with turnover at an all-time high of £127m. It also unveiled a £30m new saleroom at the top of Bond Street. The bid would value the company at “several hundred million pounds”, according to reports.

Bonhams, as a private company, is tightly held by just two shareholders, Robert Brooks and Dutch collector/ auctioneer Evert Louwman. Brooks has made no secret of his ambitions to rival the duopoly of Sotheby’s and Christie’s. For the moment, he is making no comment on the bids – and neither is Greenhill.
Source: Financial Times

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