WEST CALDWELL, NJ/SAN FRANCISCO/JERSEY CITY, NJ--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Jan. 11, 2000--|
Auction Will Feature the Appearance of Kiss Founders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley and Utilize Internet Bidding In Addition to Traditional Floor Bidding
Greg Manning Auctions, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMAI - news), Butterfields Auctioneers, an eBay company (NASDAQ: EBAY - news), Kiss Catalog, Ltd., and the leaders of the rock band Kiss, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, jointly announced today that they have signed a definitive agreement to sell at auction substantially all of the instruments, costumes, memorabilia and similar items used by the Kiss band since its founding in 1974.
The estimated value of the auction offerings and special autographed auction memorabilia memorializing the event is over $5 million. The offerings, comprising thousands of items, will be presented in one or more auctions at a site to be determined. Band leaders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley will personally appear at the ``live'' event auction, which will also feature Internet bidding and electronic auction catalogs that will open the auction to Kiss fans and collectors throughout the world.
The rock band Kiss is believed by many to be among the most influential bands in history, and ranks second only to The Beatles in the number of gold records for a musical group 75 million records. Known for its fiercely loyal and extraordinarily devoted fans, called the ``Kiss Army,'' the group rocketed to super stardom based upon its live concerts, which featured extravagant wardrobes, face paint and wild stage shows. As a result, the group's concert wardrobes and other concert memorabilia - the items to be offered in the auctions are especially treasured by fans and rock `n roll memorabilia collectors. Kiss' hit albums include Alive! and Destroyer. Singles sensations include ``Beth'', ``Detroit Rock City'' and ``Love Gun.''
Featured items to be offered during the auction include the Kiss Alive! tour costumes worn on stage by band leaders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley during the band's famous 1975 - 1976 Alive! tour, Kiss concert worn costumes appearing in New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art Rock Style exhibit, Gene Simmons' life mask, made by movie special effects great Rick Baker for the ``Rock Against Drugs'' video (1990), several guitars, drum kits and other instruments and gear used by the band's members on-stage during concerts and in the recording studio, and several handwritten original lyrics as well as lyric and composition books, including Gene Simmons' original, handwritten lyrics to the hit songs ``Rock N' Roll All Nite'', ``Christine Sixteen'', and ``Calling Doctor Love''.
Patrick Meade, president of Butterfields, one of the auction's co-sponsors, said, ``Kiss is not just a hit rock group - they're a phenomenon. While that alone should make this a great auction, what is unique about Kiss is their costumes and stage shows. The group is renowned for the very items that we'll be presenting in our auction.''
He continued, ``In addition to great music and stage shows, Kiss and the Kiss Army pioneered the use of technology and the Internet to foster a worldwide community of loyal fans numbering in the millions. The band created an ''official`` Kiss web site, and their fans created numerous unofficial sites. We intend to reach out to these fans with both traditional and Internet marketing, and to make this auction an Internet event in addition to a rock auction event.''
Greg Manning, Chairman and CEO of Greg Manning Auctions, Inc., the auction's other co-sponsor, said, ``What is most impressive about Kiss is their global popularity and extraordinary duration. Kiss' 1976 tour of Japan, for example, broke the attendance records previously held by The Beatles. Two decades later their 1996 tour was the No. 1 grossing tour. At Greg Manning Auctions, we are pursuing a global Internet strategy and are developing web sites in Asia and Europe in addition to the U.S. This will be a great auction for us because the Kiss offerings will be attractive not only to our U.S. customers, but to our worldwide clientele, and will highlight our advanced E-commerce capabilities.''
About Greg Manning Auctions, Inc.
Greg Manning Auctions, Inc. is a full service auctioneer of a wide range of collectibles and diamonds, and believes itself to be the nation's leading stamp auction house and one of the largest in the world. It is the first publicly owned auction company to hold real-time auctions simultaneously over the Internet and via telephone, while providing confidential transmission of bidder and seller information.
Greg Manning Auctions, Inc. possesses more than 30 years of auction experience, as well as a full staff of experts in each of the product categories in which it operates. GMAI is also distinguished by its long established and well-entrenched relationships with suppliers of quality collectibles throughout the world, and by its aggressive global strategy. In early 1999, GMAI formed GMAI-Asia.com, Inc., which opened offices in Beijing, China and recently launched its website www.iatoz.com. In July, 1999, GMAI created GMAI-Europe.com, Inc. in partnership with Afinsa Bienes Tangibles, S.A., one of the leading collectibles companies in Europe specializing in stamps, fine art and coins.
GMAI's websites are: www.gregmanning.com and www.teletrade.com. Its common stock is traded on the NASDAQ National Market System under the symbol GMAI.
Butterfields, auctioneers since 1865, is an eBay company and one of the world's most successful fine art auction houses. Butterfield galleries are located in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago and regional offices exist across the globe. Butterfields holds world record prices in many categories and offers more than 150 sales each year. Online real-time bidding has become a standard in the company's auctions and online illustrated catalogs, sales schedules and information on collecting is available at www.butterfields.com.
Statements in this press release that relate to future plans, objectives, expectations, performance, events and the like are ``forward-looking statements'' within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Future events, risks and uncertainties, individually or in the aggregate, could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in these statements. Those factors include the parties' abilities to develop, implement, integrate, and launch the services and offerings described herein, and other factors discussed in the ``forward-looking information'' or ``risk factors'' sections included in the companies' prospectuses, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, and annual reports on Form 10-K