Large crowds participate on-site and online in Ritchie Bros. Phoenix and Houston unreserved auctions

    VANCOUVER, Aug. 25 /CNW/ - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE and TSX: RBA),
the world's largest industrial auctioneer, conducted two large unreserved
public auctions in Houston, TX and Phoenix, AZ last week, with gross auction
proceeds of more than US$23 million and close to US$35 million, respectively.
Almost 2,000 bidders participated in the Houston auction and more than 1,600
took part in the Phoenix auction; bidders came from all over the world,
helping consignors achieve global fair market value on their truck and
equipment items. Seven hundred of the registered bidders at each auction
participated live and online, using the Company's real-time bidding service

    Interested buyers from 36 countries, including 46 US states, registered
to bid in the US$23 million Houston auction on August 20-21, 2008. More than
2,300 truck and equipment items were sold over the two days, with more than
US$5 million sold to online purchasers (representing 25 percent of items
available for sale online).
    "We sold equipment for more than 300 consignors," said Alan McVicker,
Ritchie Bros. Regional Manager. "We had a large auction crowd on both days.
The fact that we are located near the port in Houston makes it convenient for
international buyers to take part."
    Carl Harris, owner and president of Bravos River Constructors, has been
in the paving and construction business since 1956. When it came time to
retire, Mr. Harris did his research to determine the best method for a
complete dispersal sale of his equipment. He looked at a number of options,
including online-only auctioneers, but in his mind, Ritchie Bros. was the only
way to sell.
    "I am very satisfied with the prices I received for my equipment at the
Houston auction; it exceeded my expectations," said Mr. Harris. "Working with
Ritchie Bros. was easy from the word 'go.' From the contract and the paperwork
to handling the release of any liens...Ritchie Bros. took care of it all. I
really didn't have to do a thing. All of the personnel at Ritchie Bros. were
very courteous and always professional. I consider them my friends now."

    Over 1,600 bidders from 22 countries, including 22 US states, registered
to bid in the Phoenix unreserved public auction, which generated gross auction
proceeds of close to US$35 million on August 21-22, 2008. More than 1,800
truck and equipment items were sold over the two days, with more than
US$10 million sold to online purchasers (representing 33 percent of items
available for sale online.)
    "We had a very strong sale thanks to the local and online participation
of interested buyers," said Chris Holmberg, Ritchie Bros. Area Manager.
"Equipment prices exceeded our sellers' expectations and buyers went home
happy with their new purchases. It was a win-win situation for everyone
    R.E. Monks Construction has been selling equipment at Ritchie Bros.
auctions for decades. The third generation, heavy highway engineering company
was established in 1965 and sells their equipment at the auctions as part of
updating and keeping their fleet current. They sold seven 769 rock trucks in
the Phoenix unreserved auction.
    "We were very pleased with the auction results," said Rich Monks,
president of R.E. Monks Construction. "With Ritchie Bros., they advertise all
over the world. One of our rock trucks was sold to a buyer in Egypt. We could
never get the same results selling the equipment on our own. I really trust
them to do the job right every time."

    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
    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.

For further information:

For further information: Kim Schulz, Corporate Communications Manager,
Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Office: (604) 273-7564 or email:; Or Alan McVicker, Regional Manager, Ritchie Bros.
Auctioneers, Houston Permanent Auction Site, Tel: (713) 455-5200; Or Chris
Holmberg, Area Manager, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Phoenix Permanent Auction
Site, Tel: (602) 269-5631

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