After being caught with their proverbial pants down selling Seiko “Frankenwatches,” Bonhams Seiko sale is back on. The auction house now says it never cancelled the event – just pulled it temporarily to “upload the condition reports accompanying each lot.” Note: “upload” not update. Here’s the full statement:
There has been strong interest in our Making Waves: Seiko online sale since the sale page went live on our website on Friday. We have temporarily removed the preview function in order to upload the condition reports accompanying each lot.
We apologize to anyone who hasn’t been able to access the sale page. We invite everyone to revisit the page this week to see all the information we have about this private collection that’s been assembled by a dedicated watch collector over the past 15 years. The sale is taking place until 25 August.
Bonham’s global director of communications Lucinda Bredin emailed HoDinkee to put a specific day to that: “We are working to get the catalogue online again as early as possible this week.”
The promo page is still live while the catalogue has gone walkies, awaiting “upload.”
No matter. It’s too little, too late.
Bonhams Seiko sale statement is not a proper apology. It doesn’t acknowledge their failure or promise an investigation into or accountability for misleading the public. It’s more of a “pay no attention to the lack of authentication behind that curtain” kinda message.
Bonham’s rep has suffered irreparable harm. As has the entire vintage watch auction market. An important realization for many collectors, methinks. Who should be grateful the Internet spotted this scam before these abominations were hammered.