Back to Press March 31, 2017

Paddle8 Completes Management Buyout With Backing of New Investors

Paddle8 to Fortify Technology Capabilities and Focus on Core Business of Art Consignment and Sales

New York, NY — In early February, Paddle8, the leading online auction house, finalized a deal to buy back Paddle8 Inc. from Berlin-based Auctionata AG. The deal has been led by the Paddle8 management with the support of Lightyear Collective, a multi-family fund, which has been at the helm of market-leading buyout transactions with an emphasis on global internet, technology and media. Principals of Lightyear Collective anchored the acquisition of Hewlett Packard China & H3C along with sizeable, strategic investments in Alibaba Group.

Major upgrades to Paddle8’s technology will parallel track with amplified focus in the company’s core strength as the world’s premiere online destination for consigners and collectors, with a focus on middle-market Post-War and Contemporary Art, Prints and Multiples, Photography, Street Art and Collectibles.

“We are pleased to announce our new partnership with Lightyear Collective” states Paddle8 President and co-founder Alexander Gilkes. “While the merger with Auctionata was not what we had hoped, we’re thrilled to be operating as an independent company once again. Paddle8 is returning to our core DNA of being the premiere online destination for consignors and collectors of art and collectibles. We are looking forward to expanding into new markets and ever improving our technology and white-glove service.”

Paddle8 will soon formalize a new Advisory Board. Amongst others in the online art marketplace, Paddle8 is the only exclusive online auction platform. With support and leadership in the areas of finance, management and technology from Lightyear Collective, Paddle8 will considerably strengthen its technology capabilities, including an overhaul of the backend to implement across-the-board automation, which will lead to vast improvements in client service, user interface, payment processing and delivery logistics.

Servicing collectors worldwide, Paddle8 has offices in New York, London, Los Angeles, and Hong Kong. The platform combines the taste and trust of a traditional auction house with the efficiency and global reach of internet and mobile access to create a destination that makes it simple for the 21st century collector to buy and sell art and collectibles.

Paddle8 2016 sale highlights include:

Paddle8’s marquee category Post-War and Contemporary which achieved a sell through rate of 114% by value in its November sale.

Paddle8’s October benefit sale of the Robin Williams Bicycle Collection saw 100% sell through rate that more than doubled its high sales estimate and raised more than $600,000 for charity.

Paddle8’s sale benefitting the Hong Kong Contemporary Art Foundation (HOCA) with 120% sell through rate by value and exceeding pre-sale estimates.

In 2016, Paddle8’s benefit auction business raised an aggregate of $17 million for charity and achieved a major milestone of reaching its 1000th charity auction in February, 2017.

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