Last $40.91 USD
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As of 8:04 PM 12/17/14 All times are local (Market data is delayed by at least 15 minutes).

sotheby's (BID) Key Developments

Sotheby's Announces William F. Ruprecht to Step Down as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

The chairman and chief executive of Sotheby's is stepping down. The company said that the departure of the executive, William F. Ruprecht, was 'by mutual consent' and that he would remain in his job until his successor was found. Mr. Ruprecht, a longtime executive of the auction house and its chief for the last 14 years. Mr. Ruprecht, who joined Sotheby's in 1980, has worn many hats at the auction house. He has been an expert in its rug department, a director of marketing and a managing director. When he became chief executive in 2000.

Sotheby's Announces Unaudited Consolidated Earnings Results for the Third Quarter and First Nine Months Ended 30 September 2014; Provides Effective Income Tax Rate Guidance for the Year 2014

Sotheby's announced unaudited consolidated earnings results for the third quarter and first nine months ended 30 September 2014. For the quarter, the company reported total revenues were $94,201,000 against $107,864,000 a year ago. Operating loss was $37,469,000 against $34,361,000 a year ago. Loss before taxes was $44,167,000 against $41,860,000 a year ago. Net loss was $27,698,000 against $30,131,000 a year ago. Net loss attributable to company was $27,726,000 against $30,131,000 a year ago. Basic and diluted loss per share was $0.40 against $0.44 a year ago. Adjusted pre-tax loss was $34,051,000 against $41,860,000 a year ago, principally due to a lower level of expenses, largely attributable to management's continued cost reduction initiatives. The third quarter is always a slow quarter at Sotheby's due to the seasonality of the global art auction business. On an after-tax basis, the company’s third quarter results improved by $2.4 million (8%) as a result of a higher income tax benefit recorded in the quarter due to an increase in Sotheby's annual effective income tax rate. For the third quarter, adjusted net loss is $20.6 million and adjusted loss per share is $0.30. The adjusted net income numbers exclude restructuring and special charges. For the nine months, the company reported total revenues were $586,829,000 against $514,477,000 a year ago. Operating income was $97,053,000 against $77,640,000 a year ago. Income before taxes was $72,874,000 against $48,847,000 a year ago. Net income was $44,052,000 against $39,253,000 a year ago. Net loss attributable to company was $43,792,000 against $39,253,000 a year ago. Diluted earnings per share were $0.61 against $0.57 a year ago. Adjusted pre-tax income was $107,247,000 against $48,847,000 a year ago. The company achieved a 120% increase in adjusted pre-tax income and a 49% increase in pre-tax income for the nine months ended September 30, 2014. This improvement is principally due to the performance of the Agency segment, which reported an increase in gross profit of $48.9 million (12%) for the period. On an after-tax basis, company’s year-to-date results improved $4.5 million (12%), as the improvement in pre-tax income was partially offset by an increase in Sotheby's effective income tax rate. Adjusted net income was $64.3 million, and adjusted diluted EPS is $0.91, in comparison to $39.3 million or 0.57 per diluted share a year ago. Management estimates that Sotheby's annual effective income tax rate for 2014, excluding discrete items, will be approximately 38%. In 2013, Sotheby's annual effective income tax rate, excluding discrete items, was approximately 30%.

Sotheby's Declares Fourth Quarter 2014 Dividend, Payable on December 15, 2014

The Board of Directors of Sotheby's has declared a quarterly dividend of $0.10 for the fourth quarter of 2014. The fourth quarter dividend is payable on 15 December 2014 to shareholders of record as of 1 December 2014.

Sotheby's, Q3 2014 Earnings Call, Nov 10, 2014

Sotheby's, Q3 2014 Earnings Call, Nov 10, 2014

Sotheby's Enters into Revolving Credit Facilities

Sotheby's and certain of its wholly-owned subsidiaries are party to certain credit agreements with an international syndicate of lenders led by General Electric Capital Corporation which provides for separate dedicated revolving credit facilities for Sotheby's Agency segment and its Finance segment. The Agency Credit Agreement established an asset-based revolving credit facility the proceeds of which may be used for the working capital and other general corporate needs of the Agency segment, as well as for Principal segment inventory investments. The Finance Credit Agreement established an asset-based revolving credit facility the proceeds of which may be used for the working capital and other general corporate needs of the Finance segment, including the funding of client loans. The Credit Agreements allow Sotheby's to transfer the proceeds of borrowings under each of the revolving credit facilities between the Agency and Finance segments. On August 22, 2014, the Credit Agreements were amended and restated, among other things, to: Increase the aggregate commitments under the Credit Agreements from $600 million to $850 million, including a $50 million incremental revolving credit facility with higher advance rates against certain assets and higher commitment and borrowing costs. The Incremental Facility matures on the first anniversary of the closing of the Credit Agreements (August 21, 2015), which maturity date may be extended for an additional 365 days on an annual basis with the consent of the lenders under such Incremental Facility who agree to extend their incremental commitments. As a result of this increase in the aggregate borrowing capacity of the Credit Agreements, the borrowing capacity of the Agency Credit Agreement will increase from $150 million to $300 million and the borrowing capacity of the Finance Credit Agreement will increase from $450 million to $550 million. Increase the advance rate inventory, and include certain of Sotheby's trademarks in determining the borrowing base availability of the Agency Credit Agreement. Increase the maximum permissible amount of net outstanding auction guarantees from $300 million to $600 million. Extend the maturity date of the Credit Agreements from February 13, 2019 to August 22, 2019, exclusive of the Incremental Facility, which has a maturity date of August 21, 2015 but may be renewed annually, as discussed above. Sotheby's incurred approximately $2.2 million in fees related to the amendment and restatement of the Credit Agreements, which will be amortized on a straight-line basis through the August 22, 2019 extended maturity date of the Credit Agreements. In addition, Sotheby's could incur up to approximately $1.1 million in incremental annual commitment fees associated with the increased borrowing capacity of the Credit Agreements.

 

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