Weng Fine Art would support potential offer from U.S. fund to take over Artnet

15 Dez. 2022 / Pressemitteilungen

Weng Fine Art AG (WFA), as the largest shareholder of artnet AG (Artnet), is currently talking to potential investors and partners who are ready to  develop Artnet structurally, and who would have the necessary management and capital resources to do so.

At present, the WFA favors a US private equity fund, which has been introduced to it by the Neuendorf family.  WFA could  very well envision working together with this fund. So far , however,  WFA has not signed any preliminary agreement with this investor. 

WFA's goal is to reach a solution for Artnet  during the first half of 2023. If this does not succeed, WFA would examine the possibility of making its own tender offer for Artnet. 

In parallel to the investor talks, WFA is urging Artnet's current management to finally reduce its personnel expenses, which are far too high compared to the revenue. Layoffs of 15 - 20% are absolutely necessary. Furthermore, the pension payments to the member of the board Hans Neuendorf must be stopped, which alone, cumulated over the past ten years, have exceeded Artnet's entire current equity capital! Finally, WFA r expects cost savings from the expiring lease contracts for the completely oversized office spaces, especially in New York as well as in Berlin. With significant, structural cost reductions, Artnet would have the opportunity to operate profitably in 2023  for the first time in years. The fact that Artnet's current management is apparently relying primarily on further subsidies from the US government to maintain liquidity, however, is considered grossly negligent by the management of WFA.