Repatriation and selling on the world stage

Repatriation in the auction world refers to returning an item back to its country of origin. This is a selling tactic that is regularly overlooked when considering the sale of a high end collection or an important standalone item. Placing an item into the right sale at the right time, on the right platform, can transform the end result.

For example, a client presented an important and early Australian colonial silver pap boat that they had discovered at the back of drawer in England. They were initially offered a UK auction estimate of £200-£300. This small piece of unassuming silver was promptly sent back to Australia and offered at auction where it realised A$7,000 - not bad for a simple piece of silver measuring less than 5 inches!


An example of a typical antique silver pap boat

The ‘Pap’ is a soft food that was made for infants and the poorly, made from a mix of bread softened in milk or water and sometimes sweetened. This was then fed from the Pap Boat, a boat-shaped container usually in silver.

Credit: Welcome Images/Wikipedia Commons

There is a great variety of auction houses in Australia with some boutique houses specialising in niche categories and presenting themed auctions throughout the year. Placing an item in the right sale at the right auction house can produce premium results for those home grown objects or collections with provenance.

We regularly consign items overseas to our auction partners in Italy, France, Germany, London, Edinburgh, New York and Hong Kong. Our auction partners in Australia and overseas are always looking for specialist items of interest. These items need to meet certain criteria and there are associated costs when selling overseas.

Contact us today for impartial and practical advice on tactfully selling your important item or collection.

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