Asia Auction Conditions of Sale
COLLECTION AND SHIPMENT OF WINES
1. Limitations on Importation
Bidders at auction (“Bidders”) should be aware of restrictions imposed by various jurisdictions regarding importation of alcoholic beverages. It is the sole responsibility of the buyer (“Buyer”) to investigate, apply, obtain, route, and comply with all special permit or license requirements and other restrictions prior to collection or shipment of wine (“Property”) purchased at or from Acker, Merrall & Condit (Asia) Limited (“AMC”). AMC assumes no obligation or responsibility for obtaining permits or licenses on behalf of Buyer prior to shipment, and disclaims all liability for Buyer’s failure to obtain any such permits or licenses. AMC is not the owner or seller of Property (“Seller”), but is a marketing agent which makes delivery arrangements on Buyer’s behalf and at Buyer’s direction. Bidders are urged to familiarize themselves with their jurisdiction’s importation laws prior to bidding at auction to determine if, when, and how Property may be legally delivered to their jurisdiction.
2. Collection of Property
Complimentary pick-up is available by appointment only. Please schedule pick-up by contacting AMC directly at email@example.com at least one week in advance. Property will not be released until payment in full has been received and funds have cleared. Buyers paying by personal cheque should allow five business days prior to release of Property.
3. Multiple Deliveries or Pickups
Any Lot (as such term is defined below in AMC’s Conditions of Sale) that is split into two or more parts for multiple deliveries or pickups shall be subject to a service charge per split, per Lot.
Any Property for which shipping arrangements have not been made within thirty days of the auction date may be put into storage and assessed a monthly storage charge.
Buyer is solely responsible for the shipment of Property and shall assume all obligations for compliance with applicable laws. Subject to applicable laws, at Buyer’s request, AMC may act as an agent to engage a common carrier to deliver Property to Buyer on Buyer’s behalf..
Shipping will be at Buyer’s expense, and must be prepaid or freight collect. Shipments are also subject to service charges. Shipping arrangements can be made once payment has been received in full and funds have been deposited into AMC’s account. Buyers should allow five business days when arranging shipment within Hong Kong, and ten business days for international shipments, which may require customs documentation or special routing attention.
Any loss or damage resulting from shipping Property via any carrier will be the sole responsibility and at the risk of Buyer and/or carrier. AMC is not responsible for any deterioration, damage or loss to Property occurring while in transit.
6. Title and Taxation
Title to and ownership of alcoholic beverages passes from Seller to Buyer in New York, and Buyer takes all responsibility for the product being transported from New York to its selected destination. Buyer may pick up the product at AMC’s location or make independent delivery arrangements. New York sales tax will be applied in all cases except where a permit issued by the state of ultimate delivery requires the payment of sales tax in that jurisdiction. AMC makes no representation as to the legal rights of anyone to deliver or import any alcoholic beverages or other goods into any state. It is Buyer’s responsibility to ensure compliance with applicable tax laws for shipments. Buyer hereby warrants that Buyer is solely responsible for the transport of the purchased products and for determining the legality and the tax/duty consequences of bringing the products to Buyer’s chosen destination.
Buyers holding resale licenses may be exempt from taxation and should present the required documents to AMC prior to purchase.
Some jurisdictions may also impose excise taxes on shipments of Property into their territory. AMC may collect such excise taxes from Buyer, where required.
Buyer agrees to indemnify, defend and hold AMC harmless from any and all demands, claims, suits, judgments, or other liability (including reasonable attorneys’ fees and expenses incurred by AMC in connection therewith) arising by reason of Buyer’s breach of the Agreement (as defined below) or Buyer’s failure to pay any applicable taxes. This indemnification shall survive the termination of this Agreement.
Insurance coverage on shipping does not cover confiscation by any government or law enforcement agency that may occur as a result of alleged violations of applicable laws by Sellers or Buyers.
In case of any conflict between the English and Chinese versions of this document, the English version shall prevail.
All shipping must be prepaid in full.
BUYER’S CONDITIONS OF SALE
1. BUYER’S AGREEMENT.
By bidding at auction, the bidder at auction (“Bidder”) agrees that this Buyer’s Conditions of Sale (“Conditions of Sale”), together with the Collection and Shipment of Wines, Bottle Description and Absentee Bids, all published by Acker, Merrall & Condit (Asia) Limited (“AMC”), and all incorporated into the Conditions of Sale, constitute Bidder’s entire agreement (the “Agreement”) with AMC and the seller (“Seller”) with respect to the property (“Property”) listed in this catalogue. AMC may amend the Agreement from time to time and at any time before, during and after any auction through posted notices, addenda or errata or through oral salesroom announcements during the sale. By bidding at auction, Bidder agrees to be bound by all terms and conditions of the Agreement.
2. AMC AS AGENT.
Except as otherwise stated in the Agreement, AMC acts strictly as agent for the Seller. The Agreement for the sale of all Property is therefore between Seller and the highest Bidder accepted by the auctioneer (“Buyer”). Property is divided into separate groupings as solely determined by AMC and each such grouping (a “Lot”) is subject to a separate bid at auction.
3. BEFORE AUCTION.
a) Inspection. Prior to auction, Bidder is expressly advised to physically inspect any Property in which Bidder is interested in bidding and to rely on such inspection, as opposed to descriptions in the catalogue or elsewhere. While AMC attempts to describe all Property with accuracy, AMC shall in no event be liable for any oral or written description of Property, or for any errors or omissions relating thereto. ALL PROPERTY IS SOLD “AS IS.”
AMC may seek views of outside experts either before or after the sale on certain Property, which may be marked to indicate that the expert has inspected Property. The auction venue has not selected or inspected any Property to be sold at this auction and disclaims any and all responsibility therefor..
b) No Guarantee. In no event whatsoever do Seller or AMC or any of their respective officers, employees or agents make any oral or written express or implied representations, warranties or guarantees as to the merchantability, fitness for a particular use, the correctness of any catalogue description or other description as to the origin, physical condition, quality, rarity, authenticity, attribution, value, estimated value, importance, provenance, exhibition history, potability, historical relevance or bibliographic references concerning any Property.
c) Bidder Registration. To bid at this auction, Bidder must complete and sign a registration form and provide identification and proof of age. AMC may also require Bidder to produce bank or other financial references. AMC retains the absolute right to refuse any prospective Bidder admission to, or participation in, any auction.
d) Importation. Buyer is expressly advised to read the Collection and Shipment of Wines form, which is part of this Agreement. Various jurisdictions prohibit the importation, or limit the quantity, of alcoholic beverages that may be brought or shipped into such jurisdiction. In addition, various jurisdictions may require Buyer, Seller or shipper to possess certain licenses or permits. Moreover, local laws may prohibit the importation and/or the resale of wine. It shall be Buyer’s sole responsibility to determine if such prohibitions, restrictions or limitations are applicable to Buyer and to determine before bidding at auction whether, and in what manner, alcoholic beverages can legally be brought into any jurisdiction. The prohibition or denial of, or delay in obtaining, any such permit or license shall neither justify the rescission of any sale nor any delay in making full payment for the purchase.
AMC makes no representation or warranty as to the legal right of any party to ship or import alcoholic beverages to, from, or into any jurisdiction. Further, AMC assumes no obligation and bears no responsibility whatsoever for applying for or obtaining any such permits or licenses.
e) Exportation. Property sold at auction may be subject to laws governing exportation from Hong Kong. It shall be Buyer’s sole responsibility to determine – before bidding at auction – whether an export permit or license is required for Buyer’s purchase and to obtain any such required permit or license. The denial of, or delay in obtaining, any such permit or license shall neither justify the rescission of any sale nor any delay in making full payment for the purchase.
AMC makes no representation or warranty as to the legal right of any party to ship or export alcoholic beverages to or from any jurisdiction. Further, AMC assumes no obligation and bears no responsibility whatsoever for applying for or obtaining any such permits or licenses.
f) Absentee Bidding. Bidders are expressly advised to read the Absentee Bids form, which is part of this Agreement. As a courtesy to Bidders neither present at the auction in person nor through an agent or by telephone, AMC will enter written absentee bids delivered to AMC prior to the auction, which may be over the Internet. Absentee bids must be placed in the currency of the place of sale. If AMC receives identical written bids for a particular Lot and these bids are the highest amount for that Lot at auction, such Lot will be sold to the absentee bid first received. The entry of written bids is a free service offered strictly as an accommodation to Bidders and is undertaken by AMC subject to its obligations at the time of auction. Accordingly, AMC is in no event liable for any errors or omissions in executing such written bids or for any failure to execute any such bids.
g) Telephone Bidding. Prior to the day of auction, Bidders may make arrangements with AMC to bid at auction by telephone. Telephone bidding is offered as a courtesy to Bidders who cannot be present at the auction in person, by agent, or by written absentee bid. The entry of telephone bids is a free service offered strictly as an accommodation to Bidders and is undertaken by AMC subject to its obligations at the time of auction. Accordingly, AMC is in no event liable for any errors or omissions in executing such telephone bids or for any failure to execute any such bids.
4. AT AUCTION.
a) Catalogues. Bidders are expressly advised to read the Bottle Description form, which is part of this Agreement. While AMC has attempted to describe each Lot in this catalogue accurately, in no event shall AMC be liable for any description or error or omission in such description. AMC retains the absolute right to amend at any time prior to and during the auction and in any manner any description of any Lot. Classifications in the text are for identification purposes only and are based on standard sources. Each statement contained in this catalogue and each other statement, whether oral or written, and whether made in an advertisement, bill of sale, addendum, notice, announcement or other written or oral communication, is a statement of opinion ONLY and shall not be relied upon by any Bidder. Bidders must make appropriate allowances for natural variations of ullages, conditions of cases, labels, corks and wine. In no event shall AMC accept a return, offer credit for, or adjust the price of any Property after delivery except under the terms stated in Section 5 (d) below. Images appearing in this catalogue or elsewhere are for illustrative and informational purposes only, and may not reveal defects or imperfections in any Lot. Bidders are urged not to rely on catalogue images in determining whether to bid on Property, and are strongly encouraged both to review the relevant AMC auction catalogue entry and to personally inspect any Property prior to placing bids.
b) Reserve Price. Each Lot is sold subject to a reserve price, which is the minimum price below which the Lot will not be sold. While AMC has the right to raise or lower the reserve price at any time prior to the time the Lot is opened for bidding, under no circumstance shall the reserve price for a Lot exceed the low estimate for that Lot as printed in the catalogue or as amended by oral or posted notices.
c) Estimates. Each Lot in the catalogue is accompanied by a low and high estimate of the selling price, excluding the Buyer’s premium and any taxes. Where possible, estimates are based on past sales of comparable property, and while they are intended as a general guide for prospective Bidders, in no event do they constitute either a representation or a prediction of an actual selling price and should not be relied upon as such. AMC determines estimates in advance of the sale and reserves the right to revise estimates to reflect current market conditions.
d) Bidding. Warranties. By bidding at auction, whether in person, through absentee bidding, telephone bidding, Internet bidding or otherwise, Bidders represent and warrant that (i) they are at least twenty-one (21) years of age, (ii) they have the legal authority, right, and capacity to buy, receive, possess and otherwise deal in any Lot purchased, and (iii) any bids made by Bidder or on Bidder’s behalf are not pursuant to any anti-competitive agreement and are otherwise in compliance with all applicable laws.
Bids per Lot. Unless otherwise announced by the auctioneer, all bids are per Lot in consecutive numerical order as they appear in this catalogue.
Bidding up to but not at the Reserve Price. Subject to the auctioneer’s discretion, bids shall be entered in the order in which they are received. The auctioneer may open bidding on any Lot by placing a bid on behalf of the Seller. The auctioneer may further bid on behalf of the Seller up to but not at or exceeding the amount of the reserve price by placing successive or consecutive bids for the Lot, or by placing bids in response to other Bidders.
Bidding at and Beyond the Reserve Price. Once bidding has reached the Lot’s reserve price, the auctioneer will not bid on behalf of the Seller and will accept bids only from parties other than the Seller or the Seller’s agent.
No Sellers Bidding. Sellers have agreed not to enter a bid or to cause a bid to be entered on their behalf on any Lot of which they are the owner.
Bidding by AMC. AMC reserves the right to bid for its own account on any Lot at any auction, subject to the same terms and conditions applicable to all other Bidders and Buyers.
Bidding Not Reaching the Reserve Price. If bidding on a Lot does not reach the reserve price, the auctioneer may remove the Lot from sale. At the time of such removal and before bidding on another Lot begins, the auctioneer shall announce that the removed Lot has been “passed”.
Hammer Price. The highest bidder accepted by the auctioneer will be Buyer and the striking of the auctioneer’s hammer marks the acceptance of the final bid as the “hammer price” and the creation of a contract for sale between Seller and Buyer.
Passage of Title. Buyer hereby acknowledges and agrees that title of any Lot shifts to Buyer upon the issuance of the final invoice provided to Buyer by AMC (“Final Invoice”). Buyer hereby names and authorizes AMC as Buyer’s exclusive agent to store or take any other action authorized by this Agreement until Buyer remits payment for the Final Invoice in full to AMC. Buyer acknowledges and waives the right to take possession of any purchased Lot or Lots until Buyer remits payment in full of the Final Invoice to AMC.
No Liability. In no event shall AMC be liable for any errors in entering any bids or for failure to enter any bids.
e) Parcel Lots. In the event the catalogue lists a sequence of Lots carrying the same estimates and consisting of the same type of wine, quantity and bottle size (a “Parcel”), Buyer of the first Lot in such Parcel may, in the discretion of the auctioneer, be granted the option to buy any or all additional Lots in the Parcel for the same hammer price if there is no higher absentee bid on any subsequent Lot within the Parcel. If the option is not exercised on all such Lots, the auctioneer will open bidding on the next unsold Lot and may elect to offer Buyer of that Lot the option to take any or all of the remaining Lots in the Parcel. Bidding shall continue in the same manner until all Lots in the Parcel have been offered and declared sold or unsold by the auctioneer.
f) Auctioneer’s Discretion. AMC and/or auctioneer has the sole and absolute discretion to: (i) withdraw any Lot; (ii) divide any Lot; (iii) combine any two or more Lots; (iv) refuse any bid; (v) advance the bidding, including changing the increments, in such a manner as AMC and/or auctioneer may see fit; and (vi) in the event of error or dispute, in order to determine the successful bidder, to continue the bidding, cancel the sale, or reoffer and resell the disputed Lot. Wherever AMC and/or auctioneer exercises its discretion, its decision is final, binding and conclusive in all respects.
g) Buyer’s Premium. A Buyer’s premium of twenty-four percent (24%) shall be added to the hammer price.
5. AFTER AUCTION.
a) Payment. When Due. Final Invoices are rendered reflecting the final purchase price within seven (7) days following each auction. Buyer may pay each invoice upon receipt, but in any event must pay each invoice within thirty (30) days following the date of auction. All payments received more than thirty-five (35) days after the date of auction will be subject to an interest charge of 1.5% per month until the invoice is paid in full, notwithstanding any other provision of these Conditions of Sale.
Method of Payment. Payment may be made by cheque or wire transfer. All cheques returned unpaid will be subject to a HKD 800 processing fee. Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted for purchases of HKD 100,000 and less. No other credit cards will be accepted. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for wire instructions, or if you have any questions.
b) Release of Purchased Property. Once payment in full of the final purchase price has been received by AMC, and subject to Buyer’s compliance with the other terms and conditions of the Agreement, the purchased Lots will be released to Buyer. Any Lot not collected by Buyer within thirty (30) days following the auction will be removed to storage by AMC and the costs of packaging, handling, removing, insuring, and storing that are incurred by AMC in connection therewith shall be assessed as set forth in the Collection and Shipment of Wines form. Any such Lot will be released from storage only after payment is made in full of the aforesaid costs at the applicable rates then in effect.
c) Packing and Shipping. Buyer is expressly advised to read the Collection and Shipment of Wines form.
By AMC. Subject to the terms of the Collection and Shipment of Wines form, all packaging, handling, transporting, insuring, and delivering of purchased Property are the sole responsibility of Buyer and occur at the sole risk and expense of Buyer, whether or not Buyer engages AMC for such purpose. Buyer shall pay AMC in advance for all expenses incurred by AMC in engaging such services unless AMC chooses in its sole discretion to bill Buyer after such services are performed.
By Third Parties. AMC, on behalf of Buyer, will follow Buyer’s instructions in arranging the delivery of the purchased Property by a carrier selected by Buyer; provided, however, that AMC shall not be responsible for any acts or omissions of any carrier or shipper, including, without limitation, any packing, handling, transporting, insuring or delivering of any Property and any storage or shipment of Property under inappropriate conditions.
d) Rescission. AMC’s Limited Guarantee. If, within ninety (90) days after the auction, Buyer of a Lot notifies AMC in writing that such Lot is short or is in unsound condition (e.g., cooked and spoiled), or that any statement made in AMC’s offering materials concerning such Lot is materially incorrect, AMC shall be the sole arbiter, by way of inspection or by such other reasonable means as it sees fit, of the validity of such claim between Buyer and Seller and shall make a final decision binding on Buyer and Seller based on its determination of the validity of such claim. No claim made by Buyer under the preceding sentence shall be addressed by AMC unless all Property in question (i) has the AMC auction sale date reference sticker on its bottle, (ii) is in the same condition in which it was delivered to Buyer, and (iii) has been shipped to and from Buyer and stored under appropriate conditions. Having decided any such claim, AMC may, in good faith, direct that the sale either stand or be rescinded and that the final purchase price be refunded either in whole or in part. By bidding at auction, Bidder agrees for itself and its successors and assigns that (i) it hereby waives any right to make any claim or bring any legal action against AMC resulting from any determination made or failed to be made by AMC under this Paragraph 5 (d), and (ii) in the event that Buyer fails to provide timely and proper notice to AMC under this provision, Buyer shall be deemed to have waived the right to rescission as herein provided.
Rescission available solely to Buyer. The remedy of rescission, if AMC elects to rescind under the circumstances, is available solely to Buyer of Property, who must have remained the sole owner thereof with no transfer of any interest therein to any third party.
Buyer’s Sole Remedy. The refund to Buyer of the purchase price for Property shall be Buyer’s sole remedy for any matter relating to the condition of Property, and such remedy shall be available only if Buyer received such Property from AMC. In no event shall AMC be liable for any indirect, special, punitive, consequential, loss of profit or other damages, including, without limitation, attorneys’ fees and expenses, no matter how arising, and AMC’s maximum liability shall be the amount paid by Buyer (exclusive of all taxes) for any Property that is subject to return as permitted hereby. Seller shall have no other liability of any nature or kind under this Agreement, in tort or otherwise, whether at law or in equity, with respect to this Agreement or the offer, purchase and sale of any wine comprising the purchase and sale of Property.
Different Importers. Although AMC makes an effort to state in the catalogue if a Lot includes wines from different importers, failure to so state is not grounds for rescission of the sale of any Lot. Similarly, any incorrect statement or omission in the catalogue concerning bottles and/or sequence numbers of Property from those producers that number their bottles comprising Property, is not grounds for rescission of the sale of any Lot.
e) Default by Buyer. If Buyer fails to make payment in accordance with the Conditions of Sale within ninety (90) days following the auction, AMC may, in its absolute discretion:
i. Cancel the sale;
ii. Resell Property publicly or privately for Buyer’s account and at Buyer’s risk and charge Buyer for any deficiency between the final bid in the resale and the final bid placed by Buyer, in addition to all costs and expenses of both the initial sale and the resale at AMC’s regular rates and the Buyer’s premium due in connection with the initial sale;
iii. Set off all sums due from Buyer against any amounts which AMC may owe to Buyer;
iv. Exercise all the rights and remedies of a party holding a first priority perfected security interest in any Property or other property in AMC’s possession owned or consigned by Buyer;
v. Collect from Buyer the total amount due plus any loss, cost or expense incurred by AMC in effecting such collection;
vi. Charge Buyer interest at the rate of eighteen percent (18%) per annum on all sums due from Buyer;
vii. Collect from Buyer the fees, expenses, and disbursements of legal counsel to AMC incurred in exercising any one or more of the rights or remedies set forth in this Agreement;
viii. Not permit Buyer directly or indirectly to participate in future AMC auctions;
ix. Exercise any right or remedy against Buyer available to Seller; and
x. Assert any other rights or remedies available at law or in equity.
AMC may, in its discretion, exercise any one or more of the preceding remedies or any combination thereof.
f) Buyer’s Indemnity. Buyer shall indemnify, defend, and hold AMC, and its officers, directors, employees, and agents, harmless from any loss, expense (including attorneys’ fees and expenses, which shall be paid in advance), liability, costs, or damages incurred by reason of (i) any breach or alleged breach of any warranty herein or breach of this Agreement by Buyer, (ii) any inaccuracy of any certificate, document or instrument delivered by Buyer pursuant to or in connection with this Agreement, and (iii) any act or omission of Buyer, its agents or employees, adversely affecting Property. Buyer’s representations, warranties and indemnification will survive completion of the transactions contemplated in this Agreement.
g) Copyright. AMC reserves copyright in all images, illustrations and written material produced by or on behalf of AMC, including, without limitation, the content of this catalogue (collectively, “Material”), and in no event may Buyer or any third party use any of Material without AMC’s prior written consent. In no event do either AMC or Seller make any representation or warranty that Buyer will acquire any copyright, reproduction right or any other intellectual property right in any Property.
6. GENERAL TERMS.
a) Headings. The section headings in this Conditions of Sale are for convenience of reference only and shall not be considered as substantive parts of this Agreement.
b) Entire Agreement. This Agreement (including all instruments incorporated by reference) constitutes the entire agreement between AMC and Buyer pertaining to the subject matter hereof and supersedes any and all prior discussions and agreements between them. This Agreement may not be amended, nor shall any waiver, change, modification, consent, or discharge of any part of this Agreement be granted, except by an instrument in writing executed by both AMC and Buyer. Any failure by AMC to enforce any provision of this Agreement shall not operate as a waiver of such provision.
d) No Joint Venture. No provision of this Agreement shall be construed to create any agency, partnership, or other joint enterprise between AMC and Buyer..
e) Governing Law. This Agreement shall be governed by and construed and enforced in accordance with the laws of Hong Kong without reference to principles governing conflicts of law..
f) Dispute Resolution. Any and all disputes or controversies arising under or relating to the interpretation or application of the terms of this Agreement or any extension or modification thereof, or the asserted breach thereof by any party, shall be resolved through final and binding arbitration in Hong Kong under the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre Administered Arbitration Rules in force when the notice of arbitration is submitted in accordance with such rules. There shall be one arbitrator, and the arbitration proceedings shall be conducted in English. Any arbitrator so appointed shall be empowered to, in addition to awarding actual money damages (but not punitive damages) against the party found to have violated this Agreement, grant in his award, injunctive or other types of equitable relief, to enforce specific performance of this Agreement, and to prevent any continuing or further violation of its terms. Judgment upon the award rendered in such arbitration may be entered in any court having jurisdiction there. The cost of such arbitration shall be borne equally by the parties, except that each party shall be responsible for its own attorneys’ fees.
In case of any conflict between the English and Chinese versions of this document, the English version shall prevail.