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Fortuna Hosts First-Ever Virtual Live Jewelry  Auction   

It was able to offer a safe virtual alternative to auction buyers seeking a sense of normalcy in an abnormal time.

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Mauboussin Art Deco Rock Crystal and Diamond Brooch, achieved $18,750 at Fortuna’s FINE JEWELS auction; Cartier Egyptian Revival Horus Diamond Cuff, achieved $31,250 at Fortuna’s FINE JEWELS auction

(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK — On Thursday, amidst the growing impact of the coronavirus on the  jewelry and diamond market, Fortuna held its first-ever virtual live jewelry auction. While most  other auction houses have shut their doors or postponed sales, Fortuna felt a great sense of  responsibility to its consigners, who were understandably more eager to make a sale in these  uncertain times. The March ​Fine Jewels​ sale, which was held exclusively online and over the  phone, saw the greatest volume of online bidders in Fortuna’s history. In fact, nearly 90% of  winning bidders came from online platforms; and Fortuna’s mobile app saw a 20% increase in  use, compared to their previous auction in February.

Fortuna’s digital efforts are hardly new, and their state-of-the-art bidding technology has granted  the boutique NY auction house the ability to reach buyers globally. With recent developments in  global health, the company has heavily ramped up its online presence for March, adding video  shots of jewelry to their online catalog, and even introducing a new service: virtual previews for  clients who are unable to come and see the pieces up close. As an added measure to protect  the health of clients and staff, Fortuna was quick to employ strict hygiene protocols  recommended by global and national health authorities. Those who attended previews in-person  were provided gloves and hand sanitizing stations; and jewelry being handled by clients were  sanitized immediately after each point of contact.

While the auction saw a great influx of live online bids, it also achieved greater quantities of  pre-bidding activity. One lot that particularly enthused collectors was the ​Mauboussin Art Deco  Diamond and Rock Crystal Brooch.​ The brooch came with a letter of authenticity from  Mauboussin, as well as a copy of the original archive drawing from the jewelry firm—an  extremely valuable point of interest to any collector. This beautiful piece of art history achieved  $18,750 at auction, surpassing its high estimate and more than doubling the starting bid. The  sale also featured a ​Cartier Egyptian Revival Diamond Cuff​, a bold statement piece depicting  Horus, the Egyptian god of sky. The lot achieved $31,250 at auction, far surpassing its starting  bid of $18,000—confirming the strength that vintage Cartier commands at market.

Upcoming Fortuna Auction Sales    

The heightened sanitation efforts and significant improvements to Fortuna’s digital catalog  browsing experience will continue for the upcoming ​Important Jewels​ and ​Important Watches  sales, taking place on ​April 30th​. If you have jewelry or watches you would like to submit for  April’s auction, the last day to consign is ​March 30th​. Visit ​​www.FortunaAuction.com or call  (212) 389-9040 for a free online valuation.

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