TIAMSA Member News: PUBL: Art dealers’ inventory strategy: the case of Goupil, Boussod & Valadon from 1860 to 1914 (online article in: Business History, 2020)

Together with Geraldine David, TIAMSA Board Members Christian Huemer and Kim Oosterlinck have just published “Art dealers’ inventory strategy: the case of Goupil, Boussod & Valadon from 1860 to 1914“, an online article in Business History.

Abstract: Proper inventory management is crucial for art galleries. Yet, despite its importance, inventory management has been overlooked in the literature. We distinguish four main strategies used by art dealers to manage their inventory and use this classification to set the inventory strategy of Goupil, Boussod & Valadon, a major art gallery active in France at the end of the 19th century, into perspective. Goupil’s books cover the sale of more than 25,000 artworks between 1860 and 1914. Rapidity to sell was a key element in Goupil’s strategy. Out of the sold artworks, almost 75% were sold within a year. Goupil required a slightly higher mark-up for artists from which he held a large inventory. Mark-up for artists in residence and the likelihood to sell their artworks at a loss were lower, signalling a preoccupation for their long-term market.
Read the full article here.