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Phillips auction house brings pulling power of vintage watches to Baselworld

Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo

Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo will exhibit a selection of the most prestigious watches from its spring auctions at Baselworld in May.

It will give trade executives and collectors the chance to get up close with pieces from the auction house that has sold the two most expensive Rolex watches in history, including the Paul Newman Daytona that went under the hammer for $18 million in 2017.

The Phillips stand will occupy a prime position in Hall 1.0, displaying watches that will go under the hammer at The Geneva Watch Auction: Eleven sales, which take place on May 9 and 10.

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There is not expected to be a live auction at Baselworld.

“Exhibiting in the heart of the world’s largest watchmaking exhibition is a magnificent opportunity to present to collectors and watch aficionados, exceptional pieces that Phillips has assembled for its spring sales, but also watches from private collections never before exhibited together,” a statement from Aurel Bacs, senior consultant, and Alexandre Ghotbi, head of watches, Continental Europe and the Middle-East at Phillips, says.

“We believe that our mission is to promote the art and culture of watchmaking, past and present, and we work hand in hand with all manufacturers, large and small, to this end. It is therefore an obvious choice for the world’s leading watch auction house to be present at Baselworld. We are very happy to pave the way at Baselworld, and thank Michel Loris-Melikoff who has shown a visionary openness by giving us a high quality welcome at the exhibition,” they add.

Mr Loris-Melikoff, managing director of Baselworld, has brokered the deal with Phillips as part of his effort to turn the trade fair into a consumer-facing event. “By welcoming the Phillips auction house, Baselworld will offer its 80,000 visitors the unique opportunity to discover and admire exceptional watches that have marked the history of watchmaking. The younger generations and the general public are interested in mechanical watches made unique by their history, provenance, technique, patina and age. I am particularly pleased to welcome the prestigious Phillips company and warmly thank Aurel Bacs and Alexandre Ghotbi for their confidence in jointly opening up a new avenue at Baselworld,” he says.

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Rob Corder

The author Rob Corder