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Sotheby’s to start accepting BTC and ETH After Partnering with Coinbase

Fine Art Broker Sotheby’s

May 5, 2021

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Giant art broker, Sotheby’s has linked up with cryptocurrency exchange platform Coinbase to start accepting cryptocurrency payments. The two selected cryptocurrencies for this partnership are Bitcoin and Ether.

Sotheby’s Pioneers Crypto Payments For Physical Art Auctions

The British-founded New York-based auction house is pioneering in accepting cryptocurrency payments for a physical art auction. Banksy’s iconic “Love is in the Air” will be open for payments in Bitcoin or Ether.

NFTs have been very popular with digital art. In April, Sotheby’s accepted digital NFTs for some of its art pieces. The giant art broker’s latest move may have just shoved the door wide open for cryptocurrencies to take over the art industry as well.

Bidding on Banksy’s “Love is in the Air” will go up on Sotheby’s on May 12. The fine art broker has estimated the art’s value to be between $3 million and $5 million. According to the announcing blog post by Sotheby’s, the buyer will have the chance to pay the hammer price with cryptocurrency.

If the buyer chooses to buy the artwork with Bitcoin, he or she will have to part with between 54 to 90 Bitcoin. On the other hand, if they choose to buy using Ether, it will cost them between 1,000 to 2,000 ether.

Buyers should, however, take note that only the hammer price for Banksy’s “Love is in the Air” can be paid for in cryptocurrencies. The British-founded New York-based auction house will not accept cryptocurrency payments for the buyer’s premium and overhead premium. As for the crypto payments, Sotheby’s CEO Charles F. Stewart stated that it would be up to the artists if they decide to keep it or convert to fiat.

Fine Art Broker Sotheby’s Continues to Experiment with New Technology

The British-founded New York-based auction house described its launch of crypto payments as a market-defining arrangement. Sotheby’s is keen on experimenting with new technology and believes it continues to do so with this latest crypto payment.

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