Bonhams expands again with purchase of Paris auction house

London—Bonhams acquired another auction house, this time taking over the Parisian company Cornette de Saint Cyr.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Pierre Cornette de Saint Cyr created the auction house that bears his name in 1973.

Today, his sons Arnaud Cornette de Saint Cyr and Bertrand Cornette de Saint Cyr run the company respectively as CEO and Head of Appraisals and Collections.

Bonhams said Arnaud and Bertrand will remain with the company after the acquisition and the auction house will operate as Bonhams Cornette de Saint Cyr.

The acquisition of Cornette de Saint Cyr gives Bonhams a second address in Paris in addition to the auction room that opened in September 2021, and more of a foothold in Europe. In addition to its flagship on avenue Hoche in Paris, Cornette de Saint Cyr has an auction room in Brussels, Belgium.

Bonhams CEO Bruno Vinciguerra said the acquisition was part of the company’s strategy to become a global player with a balanced presence in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Arnaud noticed the “wonderful synergy” between Bonhams and the family business.

“This new adventure will help the auction house founded by my father to grow stronger,” he said.

“We are very proud of what we have achieved and look forward to working with Bonhams to further our goals and international reach.”

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Cornet of Saint-Cyr has 16 departments including Jewelery and Collectible Watches, Haute-Couture, Comics & Illustrations, Books & Manuscripts, and Natural History.

He is known for his highly publicized sole proprietorships, including Abstract Art by Alain Delon (2007); the estate of the Franco-Japanese painter Foujita (2011); furniture and layout of the Hôtel Royal Monceau (2008); and the couture collection of Hélène Rochas, former CEO of French fashion house Rochas. (2016).

In October, the auction house is expected to sell Asian art from the personal collections of members of the Rousset family.

The purchase of Cornette de Saint Cyr marks Bonhams’ fourth acquisition this year and the fifth since British private equity firm Epiris bought in 2018.

Prior to that, Bonhams took over The Market, an online platform for classic cars and motorcycles, in April 2021.

“This acquisition represents a huge step forward for our ambitions in an important market and strengthens Bonhams’ position as the world’s leading primary market auctioneer,” said Epiris Partner Alex Fortescue. of the purchase of Cornette de Saint Cyr.

“Well-planned and well-executed mergers and acquisitions are a key part of our strategy to add scale, strategic position and growth to the businesses in which Epiris invests. Bonhams truly embodies this.”