Auckland auction house Mossgreen-Webb's will close if a buyer can't be found.

Mossgreen-Webb's is in liquidation after its Australian owner was put into voluntary administration just before Christmas.

Melbourne-headquartered Mossgreen, which bought Webb's auction house in Parnell in 2015, owes A$12 million ($13.1m) to 400 creditors.

Liquidators of the New Zealand arm of the business, Andrew Bethell and Andrew McKay, have yet to file their first report but are expected to by the end of this week.


"The New Zealand staff of Mossgreen-Webb's have achieved significant sales in the market last year and are all experts within their fields. While it is the intention of the liquidators to close the business, a sale would be considered and expressions of interest are sought for this successful Auckland auction house," Bethell and McKay said today.

"The liquidators and Mossgreen-Webb's staff will work to ensure the swift and orderly return of vendors' property. To that end vendors are asked to contact Mossgreen-Webb's immediately to arrange collection of their items," they said.

When purchasing Webb's, chief executive Paul Sumner described Mossgreen as "Australia's largest and highest-grossing auction house and the most favoured avenue for collectors when they are selling complete collections".

Set up in the 1970s, Webb's has exhibited work by some of the country's best-known artists, including Colin McCahon and Gottfried Lindauer.