• 08 /10 2015

    Artnews S.A. and BMP Media Holdings Complete Transaction Creating the World’s Leading Publisher of Art News, Reviews and Information


    BMP Media Holdings Acquires 60% Ownership in Artnews S.A.

    October 8, 2015, New York — Warsaw – BMP Media Holdings LLC has completed today the transaction to acquire 60% ownership in the Warsaw Stock Exchange listed Artnews S.A. (WSE: ATN) for a total consideration of PLN 63.86 million (US$ 16.9 million). As a result of this transaction, all of BMP Media Holdings art media publications including Art in America, The Magazine Antiques and Modern, as well as Artnews S.A. publications ARTnews, Art & Business and its Skate’s Art Market Research business unit, will operate under the newly combined Artnews S.A.

    “With the completion of this transaction we have created the world’s largest and most influential print and digital publisher of art news, critical reviews and information. Under the new Artnews S.A., we have the most complete archive of art history and events of the past 100 years, and also offer the most comprehensive coverage of the classical, modern, contemporary and decorative arts fields,” said Peter M. Brant, owner of BMP Media Holdings LLC and now the majority controlling shareholder of Artnews S.A. “The new Artnews S.A. will utilize its combined forces and iconic media titles to expand digital content and online news reporting, grow European market share and create new business offerings uniquely targeted to art lovers around the world.”

    Effective immediately, Dan Gardner, Heiner Rutt and Ed Sherrick will join the Supervisory Board of Artnews S.A. Mr. Gardner is Co-Founder and Executive Creative Director of Code & Theory, Mr. Rutt is the former Managing Director of Carlyle Germany and one of the founding members of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) who helped establish the company as the leading consultancy in Germany and throughout Europe, and Ed Sherrick was previously Senior Vice President and CFO of White Birch Paper. The Board will be reduced from seven to six individuals to meet requirements of Deutsche Boerse where the firm intends to list next year in addition to its existing Warsaw listing.

    Artnews S.A. will continue to be run by its current CEO, Izabela Depczyk who led on the turnaround of ARTnews magazine acquired by what is now Artnews S.A. from Milton Esterow in April of last year. The turnaround includes achieving profitability in the U.S. six months ahead of schedule, maintaining profitability of the print magazine ARTnews since May 2015, repositioning Skate’s Art Market Research as the art business intelligence unit of Artnews S.A. and transforming as the growth leader in terms of digital audience and digital only revenues among other art media peers.

    “We have an extraordinary pool of talent in our combined organization, total dominance in the U.S. print market in terms of paid and verified circulation, global leadership in the art business intelligence field through our Skate’s business unit and maintain strategic focus to make the world’s largest digital art media business in terms of both audience and revenue by integrating the journalistic content, data and research from all of our media properties on a single platform,” commented Izabela Depczyk, Chief Executive Officer of Artnews S.A.

    The New Team

    In addition to Ms. Depczyk as CEO, the newly combined Artnews S.A. organization includes Szczepan Adamski who will continue in his role as General Counsel and Mark Korb will remain as Chief Financial Officer. Cynthia Zabel, previously the Publisher of Art in America, will become head of sales for Artnews S.A., and Violeta Breheny, the former head of ARTnews S.A.’s U.S. operations, will assume the role of Director, Operations.

    On the editorial front, Lindsay Pollock and Sarah Douglas will run editorial for Artnews S.A. Ms. Pollock will continue as Editor in Chief of Art in America and will build upon the strength of the last five years in which newsstands sales grew 12 percent. Ms. Douglas will focus on further expansion of and ARTnews quarterly print issues. The Company’s entire online content is to be consolidated under the domain before the end of the year and the platform will be also used as the key driver for European expansion. Dina Veprinsky, the Director of Production at, will continue in this capacity and will oversee the production process for the merged company.

    Elizabeth Pochoda will continue in her role as Editor of The Magazine Antiques and Beth Dunlop will remain Editor of Modern. Art in America, The Magazine Antiques and Modern will remain in print under the current publication schedule (eleven, six and four issues per year respectively), thus giving ARTnews and Art in America subscribers up to 25 more print issues a year depending on their subscription plan.

    As the group’s digital media properties will be consolidated around this will become the primary source of growth for the Company going forward through introduction of various new digital products, databases and services and rollout of in-language sites across various European markets in 2016.

    As the core element of the digital strategy, Artnews S.A. will allocate further resources to expand the suite of products and services provided by Skate’s, the art business intelligence unit of the company, and expanding its premium subscription offer already fairly successful with large corporate art industry customers.

    About the New Artnews S.A.:
    ARTNEWS S.A. is the world’s leading print and the fastest growing online art media business with its media properties including print magazines Art in America, ARTnews, The Magazine Antiques, Modern and Art & Business, digital properties and and Skate’s Art Market Research business intelligence unit. ARTNEWS S.A. is publicly listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE:ATN) and its controlling shareholder is BMP Media Holdings LLC, owned by Peter M. Brant. The company’s primary operations are located in New York.

    Read more
  • 22 /09 2015

    Shareholders Approve Artnews/Art in America Merger


    New York’s BMP Media Holdings LLC is on Track to Become Majority Owner of Artnews S.A. as a Result of PLN 144M ($38.6M) Merger

    September 22, 2015, Warsaw – BMP Media Holdings LLC, the New York based media company owned by Peter M. Brant, is set to acquire approximately 60% ownership interest in Artnews S.A. for a total consideration of about $17 million including approximately $14 million paid with contribution of assets in-kind. The assets contributed by BMP Media Holdings LLC are to include a 100% ownership interest in Art in America magazine, the largest print competitor of Artnews S.A. in the USA.

    Artnews S.A. extraordinary shareholders meeting held today, voted in favor for the transaction and agreed to issue 3,412,903 new shares to be paid for cash at PLN 2.69 per share by Skate Capital Corp, the specialist art industry investor and existing shareholder of Artnews S.A., and 25,531,132 new shares of Artnews S.A. to BMP Media Holdings LLC as the payment for the assets contributed by BMP Media Holdings LLC. Simultaneously with this transaction Redline Capital Management will complete a partial exit from its investment in Artnews S.A., albeit remain as minority shareholder in the company. At PLN 2.69 per share agreed for the cash component of Artnews S.A. capital increase and approved by Artnews extraordinary shareholders meeting today, the merged company is valued at PLN 144.3 million or US$ 38.6 million.

    BMP Media Holding assets being sold to Artnews S.A. include 100% ownership interest in each of Art in America, The Magazine Antiques and Modern print and digital publications.

    Artnews S.A. is scheduled to close on this transaction with BMP Media Holdings LLC in October, 2015 and will consolidate related art media assets as of the day of closing. Artnews S.A. will remain listed in Warsaw and will seek for an additional listing in Germany in 2016.

    About Artnews S.A.
    ARTNEWS S.A. is the world’s leading print and the fastest growing online art media business with its media properties including the 113 years old ARTnews and the Art & Business monthly print magazines, and the digital properties and Skate’s art business intelligence unit ( ARTNEWS S.A. is listed at Warsaw Stock Exchange and has its primary operations in New York, USA via Artnews Ltd, the 100% owned subsidiary of ARTNEWS S.A.

    Read more
  • 18 /09 2015

    Skate’s Expands Research Coverage to Watches Category


    Christie’s Leads the Watch Auction Market by GMV, Phillips by Lot Value, Patek Philippe Remains “Picasso of Timepieces”

    Skate’s, the business unit of Artnews S.A. and the world’s leading art business intelligence company, expands its coverage to include the fine watches (timepieces) category. The expansion comes on the back of increasing demand from global auctions and art advisory companies for up-to-date art and collectibles data and analytics, of which Skate’s is the primary provider.

    Our inaugural ranking of the world’s top 20 auction houses by watch sales based on year-to-date auction results (January 1 through September 16, 2015) reveals the following (see Exhibit 1 below for the full ranking):

    • The total watch sales at 40 auction houses that regularly trade watches and are monitored by Skate’s were $178 million in the 8.5 months of this year so far, the equivalent of a moderately successful auction night at either Sotheby’s or Christie’s in the fine-art category.

    • Christie’s is by far the market leader, with $45.3 million in sales and 25.7% market share of fine-watches sales in 2015, YTD, with archrival Sotheby’s having 22.1% market share. Christie’s clearly wins on volume, while Sotheby’s sports a far better average (per watch lot) value: $52,181, versus $38,126 for Christie’s.

    • Phillips is the undisputed leader in value per lot. With $147,149 per watch sold, Phillips provided on average the best price discovery for significant watches in 2015 so far.

    • Auctionata is an impressive 5th by GMV and is by far the market leader of online watch sales among its peers.

    • Dutch e-commerce platform Catawiki leads by volume, with over 11,000 watches sold, although the absolute majority of Catawiki products would never make it to any significant auction sale—Auctionata’s average lot value is almost 10 times higher than that of Catawiki.

    • Patek Philippe dominates high-end watches sales – out of 100 most valuable watches sold in 2015 (by auction prices), 62% were Patek Philippe timepieces (69% by market value). See Exhibit 2 below for by-brand ranking.

    For complete Skate’s watch sales rankings (including by watch brand and by auction) please request a customized data feed at

    Exhibit 1. Top20 Global Auctions by Watch Sales (2015 GMV, YTD in US$)


    Source: Skate’s Art Business Intelligence,

    Exhibit 2. Top100 Most Valuable Timepieces Sold in 2015, by Brand


    Source: Skate’s Art Business Intelligence,


    Read more