Online Equipment Auctions Growing In Popularity

By Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor | August 2008 Vol. 63 No. 8
A ‘ringman’ monitors an IronPlanet online auction.

Buyers must register and qualify to participate in IronPlanet auctions. Once a buyer is qualified, he or she is free to bid on equipment during the two weeks before the auction or on auction day. Bidding increments are usually $500 to $1,000, depending on equipment type and value.

How are payment and equipment delivery arrangements handled? Problems with buying satisfaction? Does your company assist in financing?

Branch: Many customers already have arranged for their own transportation, whether they have purchased on site or on line. In the event they do not have these arrangements pre made, transportation companies attend our auctions and are there to help them out. Payment is convenient; with our on line payment system (we accept Visa or MasterCard for on line payments). We also accept debit card payments at our auction sites (in person) and our customers can also wire transfer money directly to us. For customers that require financing, we have a relationship with CitiCapital. They have an Auction Credit Express service which gives U.S. and Canadian businesses a fast credit approval for applications made on line or at most auction sites in the United States and Canada. The credit can then be applied to purchases made at Ritchie Bros. auctions.

Regarding buying satisfaction, we encourage inspection of the equipment ahead of time and our customers appreciate the fact that they can come to the site, bring a mechanic and do their own full inspection and testing of the equipment. We provide full descriptions of equipment on the internet with photographs as well to make sure that customers are fully aware of what they are bidding on. We've been in the auction business for 50 years and are proud of the reputation we have achieved for conducting fair and honest auctions.

Groves: IronPlanet facilitates the sale and purchase of each item on its Web site to provide a secure transaction. Once a buyer wins an item, IronPlanet sends an invoice to the buyer and a sales receipt to the seller so each knows the transaction occurred. When the buyer has paid IronPlanet in full, IronPlanet notifies the seller that the item can be released. The buyer then picks up the item, or arranges transportation, and verifies that the equipment has been received in the condition in which it was listed. Finally, when the buyer verifies the equipment's condition, payment is released to the seller.