29.10.2020

Passionate natures: Finarte Auction House

We continue our exciting journey into the world of auction houses. This week, in our weekly column «Legend Alive», we would like to tell you about the Finarte auction house founded by Gianmarco Manusardi in Milan, the financial and fashion capital of Italy.

In 1959, an Italian banker Gianmarco Manusardi founded one of the most famous auction houses in Italy — Finarte in Milan. Despite the fact that Finarte initially specialized in the sale and purchase of art objects, in less than ten years the company was able to hold almost fifteen auctions! Given the level of competition in the auction world, the company quickly carved out its niche thanks to its strategy. Finarte was the first company to provide a wide range of financial services, such as sales promotion and lending, using art for these purposes.

A successful strategy coupled with a growing interest in art allowed the company in 1972 to open a second office in Rome. Having conquered the two capitals with in just ten years and a half, the management expanded its representation in Milan, opening a third office. After a successful escalation, the company focused on increasing its authorized capital. By 1986, it had grown almost six times, reaching 42.5 billion!

The opening of new sites and increase in the authorized capital gave the company a new impetus in development, and in 1989 Finarte announced a new sales record in its history — 150 billion! In the early 1990s, Finarte expanded beyond their home country by opening a representative office in London.

Having become a truly international company, in March 1997 the Italian auction house held its 1000th event in its history. Just imagine: 1000 auctions in 35 years! But the world does not stand still, and in order to keep leadership positions, you have to keep pace with the time. At the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries, Finarte launches its own website, allowing buyers to find out the latest news from the auction house without leaving their homes. The company had been actively developing its website for about a year, and in 2000 it began selling art objects via the Internet. Yes, yes, you heard right, on the Internet you can buy not only clothes or shoes, but also, for example, a painting, a piece of jewelry or a silver table set, comparable in cost to a good apartment.

At the same time, Finarte did not organize car auctions for a long time, despite the fact that a huge number of retro events take place in Italy, including one of the most famous — Mille Miglia. Only in 2017, the company acquired an automotive department with the support of AUTOMOTIVE MASTERPIECES (the company specializes in digital archives, publications, search for historic cars — editor’s note).

Over the course of two years, the Italian auction house held three events, including 2018 and 2019. They took place on the eve of «the most beautiful road race in the world.» This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Finarte had to adjust its plans and focus on finding new vehicles rather than holding auctions. And their efforts were crowned with success: in October, the company plans to conduct an online auction «Finarte 2020 Selection + 1000 Finarte», which will showcase the cars that took part in the Mille Miglia 1927/1957, as well as events related to the «Freccia Rossa». Will they be able to beat their own result in 2018 and 2019? Is a very interesting question, and we will definitely tell you about it.