Uovo, a Queens-based fine art storage and services company with locations in Florida, California, Delaware, and Colorado, has named John Auerbach as its new CEO. Auerbach formerly served in an executive e-commerce role at Sotheby’s for two years, departing in 2019.
Uovo has grown quickly since its founding in 2013, and it has said it wants to become a first-stop storage facility for institutional collections across the art and luxury sectors. The company, which competes with the London-based Crozier, recently expanded its foothold on both the West and East Coasts, acquiring the Bay Area shipping company Ship/Art and Florida’s Museo Vault, which has sites in Miami and West Palm Beach. Uovo is currently eying an expansion to Texas.
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The company’s former CEO, Daniel Schmerin, left the position in 2021 after one year in the role. Following Schmerin’s departure, Caroline Page-Katz, who was promoted to the role of president and COO in August 2021, took over business operations. As CEO, Auerbach will handle business development and marketing.
Prior to his role at Sotheby’s, Auerbach served in executive positions in the e-commerce space at Christie’s and fashion companies Kate Spade & Co., Gilt Group and Eloquii. He is cofounder of the recently-launched startup LiveArt, a digital private art sales platform, where he will remain as co-chairman.
“John’s deep executive experience in both the art and fashion worlds is invaluable as we expand our network and develop innovative solutions to meet our clients’ evolving needs,” said Uovo cofounder Steve Novenstein, in a statement.
Auerbach, who began at Uovo three weeks ago, said he joined the company because he was intrigued by its emphasis on having a digital presence. Last year, the company launched a digital portal that allows clients to manage their inventory remotely. “They led the charge in providing digital solutions for clients,” he said. “This is an industry that is traditionally very analog and almost completely offline.”
While Uovo may be best known for its clients in the art world, the company’s storage sites also houses fashion archives by the likes of Oscar de la Renta and American apparel company PVH Group. The latter is home to decades-old materials from Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and Heritage brands. Last year, Uovo made another foray into the luxury goods space, acquiring Garde Robe, a New York–based fashion- and couture-focused concierge and storage service.
Uovo “really set the standard for the art storage and logistics industry,” Auerbach said, praising its current leadership for its “understanding of the works that are entrusted to their care.”