Check out our 2024 Corporate Sustainability Report!

Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Exceeds $5 Billion in Online Equipment Sales

Since introducing its real-time online bidding service in March 2002, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Vancouver, reached and exceeded $5 billion in online equipment sales on October 6 at an unreserved public auction at its auction site in Hartford, Conn.

The company sold $880 million in equipment online between January and October 2011, compared with a total of $830 million for the year in 2010. To date, nearly 50 percent of the people bidding at the company’s auctions participate online in real time, while the rest participate in person at the auction site.

"The idea in designing the online bidding service was to give people an online experience that comes as close as possible to matching the live experience," said Bob Armstrong, COO, Ritchie Bros. "When you're participating online you can see the assets being sold, you can hear the auctioneer, you can see the numbers changing right before your eyes. It's as close as possible to being there without the smell of diesel."

In April 2010, Ritchie Bros. launched, featuring current inventory and equipment search in 21 languages, auction results in 14 languages, and live online bidding in seven languages. In July 2011, the company added detailed equipment information in 21 languages on the site, giving customers the ability to do a virtual equipment inspection before bidding online or on-site. Equipment can also be inspected in person at the auction site. Detailed equipment information includes up to 50 high-resolution photographs of each item, along with a multi-point summary of those components and comments on basic functionality.

Check out the Ritchie Bros. online bidding service at


Lift & Access is part of the Catalyst Communications Network publication family.