26.09.2020

The Craftsmen: RM Sotheby’s

Photo: RM Sotheby’s

For nearly thirty years, these people have been fulfilling the dreams of collectors around the world. Mercedes-Benz W 198, Ferrari 250 GTO or Jaguar E-Type of the first series? At their auctions you can find the first, the second, and the third — you just need to decide and make the highest bid. But who are these people?  We will tell you in today’s issue of «Legend Alive»

In February 2015, one of the oldest auction houses in the world — Sotheby’s — announced the beginning of a strategic partnership with the largest company specializing in the sale of collectible cars — RM Auctions. From that moment on, a new player entered the market — RM Sotheby’s, fulfilling the dreams of classic car collectors around the world.

But let’s jump twenty-four years back to 1991 and find out where RM Auction started. You can often hear the phrase «It’s all from childhood», and Rob Myers’ hobby is no exception. The founder of RM Auctions adopted his love for historic cars from his father, and as an adult, he opened his own car repair business. Three years after founding the company, Rob officially registered his business in Chatham, Ontario.

Initially, Myers was engaged in the repair and modernization of the technical characteristics of car engines, but later moved on to work on body modification and painting, and a year later built a specialized workshop for the restoration and sale of cars! In addition to restoration, Myers was engaged in the sale and purchase of collectible cars, which allowed him not only to achieve significant success, but also to broadly expand his own business. Thanks to the collaboration with Dan Warrener and Mike Fairbairn (in 1988 they became Myers business partners — editor’s note), the company was able to submit dozens of classic cars to auctions. Over the years, Rob, Dan and Mike have built such successful businesses in partnership with other auction companies that in 1991 they made the fateful decision to create their own auction company. It, as you have certainly guessed, got the name «RM Auction».

Over the past 40 years, the company has managed not only to become the market leader in the sale of collectible cars, but also to grow to a global scale, turning auctions into premium events, attracting the attention not only of buyers from all over the world, but also leading publications such as LE Figaro, Bild, The New York Times.

The well-coordinated work of specialists, sooner or later, was supposed to attract attention, and, as we said, at the very beginning of 2015 it happened. The strategic partnership with Sotheby’s has opened new horizons for the Myers’ team.  The auctions in Monterey, California, Hershey, Phoenix, Arizona and the collaboration with the world famous Amelia Island Elegance Concours were just the beginning of a successful collaboration. In 2007, the company held auctions with resounding success in London and in the city, famous all over the world thanks to the headquarters of the Ferrari plant, Maranello. But there are cities and events that everyone dreams of visiting / conquering, and companies are no exception. In 2010, RM Sotheby’s held an auction in Monaco on the same weekend as the historic Grand Prix, and a year later became part of one of the most reputable elegance competitions in the world — Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. As the saying goes, “appetite comes with eating,” and RM Sotheby’s continued to expand its geography year after year, holding more and more auctions. Paris, Essen, a series of events at Sotheby’s headquarters in New York, and finally the company entered the eastern market by holding an auction in partnership with Formula 1 in Abu Dhabi.

Despite the success of face-to-face auctions, the company made the decision to develop an online platform and it was the right one. After the auction on March 6-7 of this year as part of the elegance competition on Amelia Island, the company had no choice but to either cancel all subsequent auctions due to the unfavorable epidemiological situation in the world, or move them online. And then the platform launched in 2019 came to the rescue. The company was able not only to host several successful events, but also to present a calendar for the second half of the year, up to the auction in London on October 31st.

Of course, online auctions can never replace the experience of «live» events, but time dictates its own rules, and we can only hope for an improvement in the situation in the world, and continue to monitor the well-coordinated work of RM Sotheby’s employees at this difficult time and tell you about its results.