YSDS – A Case Study in Art Logistics

The art logistics world is facing challenges and responding with technological innovations. We find out how from Charlotte von Knorring, Head of Art and Fine Art at the global logistics leader YSDS.

Charlotte YSDS
Charlotte von Knorring,
Head of YSDS Art and Fine Art

What are the main functions of an art logistics company?

At YSDS, we provide our clients with a global and comprehensive art logistics service, offering logistics consulting, expert packing, shipping & documentation, installation and state-of-the-art storage facilities.

YSDS’ dedicated art teams have gained extensive experience and fine-tuned their craft throughout the years working with international galleries, auction houses, museums, private collectors and dealers. We really have experience and expertise in all aspects of art shipping, making us the perfect shipping partner for auction houses and galleries.

What is the background and history of YSDS?

Founded in 2006, the idea was “to challenge the existing art logistic industry and deliver a service and quality that always exceeded client expectations.” Today 15 years later we are proud to say that this is still the case when it comes to quality, service and delivering client–centric solutions. Our shipping professionals are personally available 24/7/365 to craft seamless shipping solutions for your precious art pieces.

We really care about our clients and their art pieces we ship as if they were our own. And this is reflected in all steps from the first contact with the client to the final delivery.

What facilities does YSDS offer its customers?

Warehouse, viewing rooms and crating shops.

YSDS crate

What are the main market challenges facing art logistics companies today?

Covid-19 has massively speeded up the digitalization of the art world. As the world closed down, it seems the appetite for art only increased with online art purchasing soaring. Online art purchasing offers many advantages as you can buy art from the comforts of your own home. However, what it doesn’t offer is a chance for you to see the piece you’re buying in real life and ensure its condition.

This means that shipping companies play an increasingly crucial part in the customer receiving their purchase in the expected condition. And this expectation is higher if they haven’t seen the artwork prior to the purchase.

How has YSDS responded to these challenges?

Our business model is all about quality, service and customer-centric solutions, so this is a challenge we have welcomed with open arms. We’re quick on the turnaround from purchase to delivery and have had a good year in 2020 – we exceeded our clients’ expectations in spite of tremendous changes around the globe.

Could you discuss an interesting case study from YSDS?  

Since their launch in 2015, we’ve been close partners with Weng Contemporary, a high-end fine art editions company based in Zug, Switzerland. We provide their global clients with logistic management consulting and solutions, artwork packing and shipping services.

It’s with pride that I can say that they’re now one of the world’s most global, qualitative and innovative online art galleries. And we’ve been with them every step of that journey, since the beginning. We work together to handle precious art editions and multiples by established and leading artist such as Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Ai Weiwei, Alex Katz and David Hockney amongst others. A great partnership.

How has the move towards the virtual space affected the demand for art logistics services?

As previously mentioned, it has highlighted the art buyer’s need for quality, safety and ability to trust art shippers to handle their precious artworks even more.

What technology innovations have been made in the art logistics market?
Following the increased demand for a more streamlined online art purchasing experience caused by the pandemic, the art world has speeded up a previously slow process of digitalizing themselves. But they still have a long way to go.

Hence, different innovations that make the shopping and browsing experience more efficient particularly through instant quoting are emerging.

YSDS is well on its way developing these type of system integration possibilities and APIs. But we want to go further. Our end goal is to create a solution providing clients with instant quoting, insurance options, full packing and crating, shipping and storage options, all in one place.

YSDS packing

What will be the main developments in YSDS’ business in the coming year?

We recently opened offices in Hong Kong and Singapore and will be expanding into new markets in Europe. We’ll also keep developing our previously mentioned API. All to meet our client’s continued and ever-increasing need for global seamless shipping solutions.

How can I find out more about YSDS?

Call or email us (contact details below), visit our website (www.ysds.com) or connect with us on LinkedIn (Your Special Delivery Service-YSDS)!

Charlotte von Knorring
+41 44 500 22 56

To find your local specialist, visit www.ysds.com/offices

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