Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Inc. is building out the global return on its investment in B2B ecommerce.
Since launching its Marketplace-E portal in March 2018 for bidding on, buying and selling equipment for the construction, transportation, agriculture, energy, government and other industries, Ritchie Bros. has generated total gross transaction volume on that site valued at more than $500 million, the company says.
More than 3,200 companies from 45 countries have sold assets on Marketplace-E, the company says. The top five equipment categories on the marketplace include truck tractors, excavators, dozers, cranes and pipelayer machines from manufacturers such as Caterpillar Inc., John Deere (Deere & Co.), Komatsu Ltd., Freightliner (Daimler Trucks North America LLC), and International (Navistar Inc.).
“With Marketplace-E, we have introduced a new type of buyer to our brand—a buyer who is uninterested in purchasing from auctions but willing to pay a premium to get top-of-the-line used assets right away,” says Karl Werner, interim co-CEO and president of international. “They don’t want to wait for the next auction because they need it now and can get it from Marketplace-E.”
From IronPlanet to Marketplace-E
In May 2018 Ritchie Bros. completed its $758.5 million acquisition of IronPlanet, an online marketplace for heavy equipment like bulldozers, farm tractors and road-paving equipment. Ritchie then used IronPlanet’s online marketplace and ecommerce assets, technology and expertise as a base to launch Marketplace-E as a B2B online marketplace that, among other services, enables sellers to list equipment, receive offers from potential buyers and negotiate final purchase agreements.
“When we only offered unreserved auctions, we limited the number of companies and individuals we could help,” Werner says. “Now that we have live auctions, IronPlanet weekly featured auctions and Marketplace-E, we have a solution for every customer need.”
Marketplace-E was developed as an online marketplace with different options for buyers and sellers, the company says. For example, a “Make Offer” feature lets sellers list equipment online and enables potential buyers to submit offers, then negotiate with potential buyers to reach an agreement. A “Buy Now” feature lets sellers list equipment online at a fixed, buy-it-now price, and a Reserve price feature provides for online listings with a minimum/reserve price.
“The seller’s minimum is protected, but the potential highest selling price is not capped,” Ritchie says. The selling process is also aided by an inside sales department that facilitates offline negotiations between interested buyers and sellers, and all asset listings are syndicated on both the RBAuction.com and IronPlanet.com websites.
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