Online art market sales reach $3.75 billion – up 15%

Fifth year of online art buying study shows continued growth, albeit at a reduced pace against the backdrop of a slowing global art market

London, UK (25 April 2017) – The fifth annual Hiscox Online Art Trade Report, published today, shows that the online art market is still growing – despite increasing competition amongst online platforms, and with further consolidation inevitable. Based on the current growth trajectory, the report predicts that the value of the online art market could reach $9.14 billion by 2021.

Robert Read, Head of Art and Private Clients at Hiscox, commented: “The online art market has continued to grow despite the backdrop of a slowing global art market. Established global brands such as Sotheby’s and Christies are starting to dominate The Hiscox Online Art Sales Platform Ranking and appear to be getting to grips with the challenge of transforming a bricks and mortar business into a multimedia business.

“Dealers continue to struggle online, though maybe they are making enough elsewhere. None of us know for sure in the gloriously opaque art market, but my bet is that the temptation to bury your head in the sand when you are not tech savvy is all too tempting.

“I have talked many times about the long-awaited consolidation in the online art market, which is still yet to happen – with the notable exception of the marriage and subsequent separation of Paddle 8 and Auctionata. We all know that consolidation will happen – even our survey of those managing the online platforms show that a massive 71% expect more consolidation. What we don’t know is when, and who is going to end up on top.”

To find out more, read the full report at


For further information please contact:

Lucy Hensher +44 (0) 20 7448 6619 [email protected]


About The Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2017

The Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2017 is the fifth annual report of its kind. It examines the current trends surrounding buying art directly through different types of online art selling platforms. It explores what people are buying, how much they are spending on art online and the barriers to purchase. It also asked art buyers what changes could be made, or services offered, to increase confidence among new and existing collectors.

The research was carried out by specialist art market analysis firm ArtTactic during January and February 2017. The findings are based on responses from 758 international art buyers surveyed through ArtTactic’s client mailing list, Twitter and Facebook. This was up from 672 respondents in 2016. Most of the survey respondents from last year participated in this year’s survey, however the sample has also been broadened out to particularly focus on new art buyers. This has allowed us to get a better idea of current online buying trends and behaviour among this next generation of buyers, and to better understand their concerns and future expectations when it comes to buying art online. Although the central focus is around fine art, we have also explored online buyers’ buying habits of other collectibles online.

About The Hiscox Group

Hiscox is a global specialist insurer, headquartered in Bermuda and listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:HSX). Our ambition is to be a respected specialist insurer with a diverse portfolio by product and geography. We believe that building balance between catastrophe-exposed business and less volatile local specialty business gives us opportunities for profitable growth throughout the insurance cycle. It’s a long-standing strategy which in 2016 helped generate gross premiums written of £2,402.6 million and a record profit before tax of £354.5 million.

The Hiscox Group employs over 2,300 people in 13 countries, and has customers worldwide. Through the retail businesses in the UK, Europe and the US, we offer a range of specialist insurance for professionals and business customers as well as homeowners. Internationally traded, bigger ticket business and reinsurance is underwritten through Hiscox London Market and Hiscox Re and ILS.

Our values define our business, with a focus on people, quality, courage and excellence in execution. We pride ourselves on being true to our word and our award-winning claims service is testament to that. For more information, visit

About ArtTactic

ArtTactic is a London-based art market research and analysis firm that offers dynamic and responsive research and commentary on the fast-paced and ever-changing art market. ArtTactic was founded in 2001 by Anders Petterson. ArtTactic has developed methodologies and analytical frameworks for the art market often used by economists and people in the financial markets. ArtTactic provides a new dimension to art market analysis by combining both qualitative and quantitative research tools with an in-depth knowledge of how the art market works. ArtTactic’s weekly art market research and analysis can be accessed via

All press releases