Sotheby’s Brings Its Businesses Under One Roof

March 6, 2019

Sotheby’s International Realty has long run its franchise and company-owned businesses separately. But that’s changing as it gathers all its businesses under one entity in an effort to claim more global market share.

Looking up a roof to its peak.

quicksandala - Morguefile

“It’s about strategic growth; having our two teams aligned gives us a sharper focus on the market,” Philip White, who has been president and CEO of the Sotheby’s franchise business, told The Real Deal. White will lead the combined businesses as chief executive.

In 2004, Sotheby’s had made the decision to spit its businesses into separate entities. But when Sotheby’s was first formed in 1976, it operated as one entity, which initially was as a marketing and referral program for auction house clients.

“This is getting back to our legacy,” White says. “It’s about creating more synergies between our two companies.” The combined companies will allow Sotheby’s to invest in more marketing and technology solutions, White says, adding that the move was not a cost-cutting measure.

“Having our two teams aligned gives us a sharper focus on the market,” he told The Real Deal. “It allows us to get even closer to the business and agents so we can build tools and systems to help them grow their businesses.”

Sotheby’s boasts 22,500 real estate professionals among 990 offices in 72 countries. Sotheby’s sold a combined $112 billion worth of luxury homes last year, a record year for the company.