$24 million dollars is the most anyone has ever paid for a timepiece, including both pocket watches and wrist watches. In Ariel Adams's recent book The World's Most Expensive Watches, he covered a bevy of multi-million dollar wrist watches that fetched huge amounts at auction. None of them came too close to reaching even $10 million dollars - but most were also Patek Philippe timepieces.
In fact he have an article that lists the rarest and most expensive Patek Philippe watches here. So, what was it about the Patek Philippe Supercomplication that encouraged a 15 minute bidding war among some of the world's most elite timepiece collectors, taking well above its 15 million Swiss Franc top estimate value? Though perhaps that was to be expected; the Patek Philippe Supercomplication, after all, was never really meant to be back at auction.
In July of 2010, Ariel published an article on aBlogtoWatch discussing how the Patek Philippe Supercomplication was coming back to sale and why. Pretty much anyone familiar with watches or the auction market knows that in 1999 the Patek Philippe Supercomplication fetched an incredible auction value of about $11,000,000 USD, making it the most expensive timepiece in the world. The only reason he did not include it in The World's Most Expensive Watches is because he chose to cover only wrist watches in the book, and the Patek Philippe Supercomplication is most clearly a pocket watch.
In 1999, the watch was purchased by Sheikh Saud Bin Mohammed Bin Ali Al-Thani of the Qatari royal family from Sotheby's. And, wouldn't you know, the watch needed to returned to Sotheby's as part of a debt repayment a few years ago... which helps explain how it returned to Sotheby's hands and why they were able to sell it again. Sotheby's knew that over the last 15 years, Patek Philippe auction values had been dramatically increasing, and since 2014 was the 175th anniversary of the Swiss watch maker, it might be a good idea to try their luck again with potentially more solvent clients.
According to Ariel Adams - Forbes.