Ritchie Bros. presents $100,000 cheque to Kelowna General Hospital Foundation during 50th anniversary auction



    KELOWNA, BC, June 3 /CNW/ - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE and TSX:
RBA), the world's largest industrial auctioneer, presented a CA$100,000 cheque
to the Kelowna General Hospital Foundation during its multi-million dollar
heavy equipment auction in Kelowna, B.C. today (June 3, 2008). The funds came
from Ritchie Bros., Dave Ritchie and Russ and Ellen Cmolik. The auction
attracted more than 1,600 registered bidders from eight countries as well as a
number of special guests including Dave and John Ritchie, who founded the
Company with their brother Ken 50 years ago in Kelowna. Other significant
attendees included CEO Peter Blake, most of the partners who owned Ritchie
Bros. before it went public in 1998, and many former customers and employees.
    Sarah Nelems, Executive Director for the Kelowna General Hospital
Foundation, accepted the donation on behalf of the foundation. Dave Ritchie
and Russ and Ellen Cmolik made personal contributions to increase the total
donation to CA$100,000. Russ Cmolik is a former partner, president and
director of Ritchie Bros. The donation was made in memory of his father
George, who worked at the Kelowna General Hospital for many years, and to
thank the Kelowna community for its support of Ritchie Bros. over the past 50
years.
    Ms. Nelems thanked Ritchie Bros. saying, "This is a company that never
forgot its roots, that cares about its employees, its customers and the
community. I am incredibly privileged, humbled, thrilled and surprised to be
here right now with Dave Ritchie, who has been, and whose family has been, so
generous over the years." She described Ritchie Bros. as "an incredible global
success story that started right here in Kelowna... Thank you for never
forgetting your roots and for contributing to our community in so many ways
over the past 50 years."
    "Ritchie Bros. is a great Canadian growth story," said CEO Peter Blake.
"It all started here and we're very proud to be back in Kelowna." He thanked
Dave Ritchie and the former company partners, describing them as "incredible
visionaries" who believed in the concept of using unreserved auctions to
create a global marketplace "and took it around the world."
    "It's tremendous to be back in our old home town," said Dave Ritchie.
"This town has always been good to me, as a young man and when we were in
business. I want to thank the community for supporting us."
    More than 500 equipment items for the forestry, construction,
transportation and other industries were sold in the unreserved public
auction, in addition to a waterfront property on Okanagan Lake that sold to an
internet bidder from B.C. for $1.275 million.
    The three Ritchie brothers - Dave, John and Ken - conducted their first
unreserved public auction at the local scout hall in Kelowna in 1958, selling
$2,000 of furniture. They conducted their first unreserved industrial
equipment auction in Radium, B.C. in 1963. Today Ritchie Bros. is the world's
largest industrial auctioneer, selling more than US$3.18 billion of trucks and
equipment at more than 350 unreserved public auctions in 2007 alone. Every
Ritchie Bros. auction is strictly unreserved, meaning there are no minimum
bids and no reserve prices. The Company maintains its worldwide headquarters
in Richmond, B.C. and has offices in 27 countries, including 38 auction sites.
Ritchie Bros. is listed on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges under the
trading symbol RBA.

    PHOTOS AVAILABLE: Historical photos and a special 50th anniversary photo
taken at the Kelowna auction site can be downloaded from
www.rbauction.com/media. A photo of the cheque presentation will be available
shortly.

    About Ritchie Bros.

    Established in 1958, Ritchie Bros. is the world's largest auctioneer of
industrial equipment, operating through over 110 locations in more than 25
countries around the world. The Company sells, through unreserved public
auctions, a broad range of used and unused industrial assets, including
equipment, trucks and other assets utilized in the construction,
transportation, material handling, mining, forestry, petroleum, marine, real
estate, and agricultural industries. The Company maintains a web site at
www.rbauction.com.
    Investors and potential investors should note that this information may
not be indicative of the overall financial performance of the Company for this
or any period.

    
    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/
    





For further information:

For further information: Kim Schulz, Corporate Communications Manager,
Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Cell: (604) 788-5379 or email:
kschulz@rbauction.com, Or Jake Lawson, Regional Manager, Ritchie Bros.
Auctioneers, Kelowna auction site, tel: (250) 491-7515


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