Major Chinese auction house hints at London expansion

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 12:32:24

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Major Chinese auction house hints at London expansion

China Guardian, China's second biggest auctioneer, is contemplating a new branch in Britain

The Chinese auction house China Guardian could be set to open an office in Europe in a move that would further confirm China's dominance of the auction world.

According to the UK's Art Newspaper, the vice president of the auctioneer, Kou Qin, has revealed that it is "considering" opening an office in London, UK, although he gave no time frame.

China Guardian is currently the second largest auction house in China behind Poly international Auctions, specialising in fine art, stamps, books and manuscripts and coins.

A Qi Baishi made a record $65.5m atChina Guardian in May

A recent report for the French Auction Market Authority revealed that China, including Hong Kong, enjoyed 34.3% of the global art sales in 2010, with figures up 137% to $10.8bn on the previous year; overtaking the US in the process.

China Guardian has been one of the main beneficiaries of this surge.

An artwork by Qi Baishi made $65.5m at a China Guardian auction in Beijing, a record for a contemporary Chinese artwork.

With a London office in place, it is likely that the company's increasingly wealthy Chinese clientele would have greater opportunities to acquire the finest pieces.

Chinese art is returning to its homeland at an ever increasing rate, as the world's second largest economy creates growing numbers of high-net worth individuals looking to make aspirational purchases.

Hurun Research Institute's recent wealth report claims that one in 1,400 Chinese is now a millionaire, defining the title by those with more than 10 million yuan, or $1.52m to their name.

Of those 960,000 millionaires, 60,000 are said to be "'super rich", with more than 100 million yuan at their disposal.

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