LONDON.- Christies International, the worlds leading art business, today announced worldwide sales for 2010 of £3.3 billion/$5.0 billion, up 53% by £ on last years figure of £2.1 billion (Figures include buyers premium). The highest sales total in the 245 year history of the firm, the figure is also the highest annual sales total ever recorded in the industry. Sales totals include private sales of £369.3 million/$572.4 million, an increase of 39% by £ on 2009 figures. In a year of blockbuster sales and record-breaking results, Christies maintained its market leader status and sold 66% of the works over $50 million against its main competitor. It was also honoured to be the auction house of choice for some of the most significant collections to come to market.