Tech Auction

May 4, 2010 11:12 AM

One man's upgrade is another's opportunity. In response to a growing amount of quality used precision ag equipment available, Kentucky-based auctioneer Chris Tucker assembled an entire auction dedicated to precision ag.

The first of its kind, Tucker's auction took place in mid-March in Effingham, Ill., and also offered online bidding.

"In the last few years, there's been a building market for used precision ag equipment,” Tucker says. "I've noticed a trend at farm auctions that when used precision ag equipment is included, it's one of the hottest items.”

He says that often when farmers upgrade a precision ag system, they're mistaken to think that it's obsolete. His goal is to provide auctions that serve as another alternative when farmers trade in equipment.

"These used items sold near the price of the item as if it were new,” Tucker reports. "A lot of the sales saved the buyer a few hundred dollars on a product, and these are very solid and reliable used products.”

The event attracted more than a dozen attendees on site and almost 100 bidders online. Tucker was impressed by the high level of interest of those who attended the auction in person, as they totaled one-fifth of the gross dollar volume, although 88% of the lots were sold through online bids.

Most of the 107 lots were Trimble or Ag Leader products. Products ranged from complete combine yield monitoring kits and individual monitors to steering systems and application control systems. One-fourth of the lots were eight to 10 years old.

Tucker plans to host another auction this summer or postharvest. He's already received interest from dealers and farmers, who he says appreciate having another alternative for finding precision ag equipment.

"Unlike discussion boards and other online bidding programs, this auction proved to be a more reliable place to find high-quality equipment,” he says. "There wasn't a need for buyers to search through long lists of classifieds and have a hit-or-miss experience.”

Since more than two-thirds of the lots were sold online via Proxibid, Tucker says the event proves there is a better way to offer precision ag products. The results speak to the reach that the online venue provided the event.

"The big advantage to having the online audience with Proxibid is the large number of pre-approved buyers. In the future, I may limit the event to online,” Tucker says.

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