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Phillips has postponed all of its sales and events globally until mid-May.

Pixaby

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The auctions impacted include the Design sale in London (scheduled for March 26) and the Geneva watches sale scheduled for May 9-10. 

In a statement to clients issued on March 14, CEO Edward Dolman said: “We have put in place arrangements for the vast majority of our staff to work from home. For those who do wish to engage with us during these difficult times, our teams will continue to be available online and on the phone and we will continue to share content online. 

“We are closely monitoring what is happening in all of our regions on a daily basis and will keep you updated on our plans for the rest of the spring sales season as the situation unfolds.”

Phillips is the second major auction house to announce radical changes to its schedule in response to the coronavirus outbreak. 

Although Christie's remains open in London (and in Amsterdam and Paris), the firm's other international offices are now closed with more than a dozen sales in Paris and New York postponed. 

Sotheby's and Bonhams both issued statements on the corona crisis across the weekend pledging to go ahead with scheduled auctions.