icollector.com, eBay Offer Real-Time Bidding to 300 Auction Houses

[London, ENGLAND] Art trade portal icollector.com announced Monday it
has teamed with eBay’s fine arts division eBay Premier to offer
real-time auctions to 300 auction houses worldwide.

The new scheme will use eBay’s Live Auctions technology, first
introduced in September 2000, making it available to icollector’s
network of auction houses. The result, say the partners, will
allow people to take part in traditional live auctions anywhere
in the world.

For the auction houses themselves, the sudden appearance of a
huge audience of potential bidders beyond the auction room
will be very welcome. Even in a depressed market it may just
help to push prices up.

Geoff Iddison, general manager of eBay Premier, said
the deal would enable eBay Premier to expand its Live Auction
capability to become the defacto standard for live real-time
bidding.

eBay says its roll-out of Live Auctions technology has been
very successful, with up to twenty percent of lots being
sold to Internet bidders by the auctioneers that have used it.
However, only thirty percent of the lots offered actually
received Internet bids, suggesting that people bidding online
are reasonably determined to acquire what they want.

Live Auctions technology ensures real-time transmission of
bids to and from the auction house, while also offering an
online audio streaming capability on selected auctions.

To use the service, bidders need to be registered eBay
users, sign up for the event online, and stick to the rules.
Auction houses often have strict user verification requirements
that have to be met before anyone can go ahead and bid for
that much-coveted Rembrandt self portrait.

Founded in 1994, icollector.com serves as an independent
connection to auction houses worldwide. It also represents
650 dealers and galleries.

Never before have collectors found it easier to locate and
bid for items to expand their art and antique collections.
At icollector.com there is a huge archive of information,
including an index of prices, to support the bidder.


The introduction of worldwide real-time bidding will help
the bidder as well as the art trade establishment. Surely it
will be easier to keep a cool head while sitting at a screen
than in being caught up in the excitment of the saleroom? Or
maybe not.

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