Records broken at Ritchie Bros. Edmonton and Houston auctions

    Customers benefit from large, diverse crowds and record new participants.

    VANCOUVER, March 31 /CNW/ - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE and
TSX: RBA), the world's largest auctioneer of industrial equipment, announces
results from its unreserved auctions held last week in Edmonton, AB and
Houston, TX, two of the larger auctions held during another busy week of
auction activity. The Company attracted bidders from around the world to these
two auctions, including more than 1,300 first-time bidders. The March 26 & 27,
2008 unreserved public auction at the Ritchie Bros. permanent auction site in
Edmonton generated more than CA$50 million in gross auction proceeds and set a
new site record for total number of bidder registrations. The unreserved
public auction at the Company's permanent auction site in Houston, TX on
March 27 & 28, 2008 generated more than US$30 million in gross auction
proceeds and set new records for total value of internet purchases and total
number of online buyers.

    EDMONTON, ALBERTA - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers set a new site record for
bidder registrations both onsite and online at its unreserved industrial
auction in Edmonton, Alberta on March 26 & 27, 2008. The public auction
attracted more than 6,330 bidder registrations, 600 more than the site's
previous record from an unreserved auction held one year ago. The two-day
auction held last week generated gross auction proceeds in excess of
CA$50 million, more than CA$8 million of which came from internet buyers. Over
3,700 items from more than 500 consignors were sold, with registered bidders
participating from 17 countries, including 32 U.S. states and all 13 Canadian
provinces and territories. Over 1,100 of those participants took part live and
online using the Ritchie Bros. real-time internet bidding service,
    "A tremendous number of people attended our sale, and more than 900 were
first-time registrants," said Brian Glenn, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Regional
Manager. "Our first auction of the year saw strong sales results on forestry
and construction equipment, with 34 percent of total proceeds going to buyers
from outside Alberta."
    Earl Marshall owns Earl Marshall Trucking out of Erskine, AB and sold 13
equipment items in the Edmonton auction, including wheel loaders, end dumps
trailers, a dump truck, an aggregate screen plant and aggregate conveyer. He
has been a Ritchie Bros. customer for a more than five years and says the
number one reason he sells equipment with Ritchie Bros. is the great
relationship he has with his Ritchie Bros. Territory Manager and the team at
the Edmonton auction site.
    "They are professional and they are experts at what they do," said
Mr. Marshall. "They know the market and they know what my trucks and equipment
are worth. But most of all, they care about their relationship with me. I used
to sell my equipment privately or through other means, but now I strictly use
Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers. They are a good group of people who treat me well.
That is truly Ritchie Bros.' secret - I really do believe they have the best
staff around."

    HOUSTON, TEXAS - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers conducted a two-day unreserved
industrial auction in Houston, TX last week with record-breaking online gross
auction proceeds for the site and the highest number of buyers purchasing live
and online, using rbauctionBid-Live. The unreserved public auction, held
March 27 & 28, 2008, featured more than 2,300 lots that sold for total gross
auction proceeds of US$30 million. More than US$8 million of the trucks and
equipment was sold to 175 online buyers, beating last year's site record for
online sales by more than US$1 million.
    More than 2,350 bidders participated in the unreserved public auction
from 38 countries, including 45 U.S. states and nine Canadian provinces. Over
400 of the registered bidders were first-time registrants at a Ritchie Bros.
    "Our permanent auction site is a great location for people who are
wanting to purchase equipment in person or using our online bidding service,"
said Alan McVicker, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Regional Manager. "The fact that
we are located right near the Port of Houston makes it easy and practical for
people to purchase equipment and ship it to wherever they are located around
the world. Forty-eight percent of purchases at this auction were made by
customers located outside Texas and more than 25 percent of purchases went to
buyers located outside of the country."
    Alan Walker of Houston-based Southern Core Supply has been buying and
selling equipment at Ritchie Bros. auctions for close to 20 years. He was
pleased with the refurbishing that was done to his equipment before the sale
and says it helped him get better returns for his machines at the auction.
    "I really believe that Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers is the greatest auction
company there is," said Mr. Walker. "They have very professional staff. My
Territory Manager takes care of absolutely every detail; I just drop off my
equipment and Ritchie Bros. takes care of the rest. They get a lot of buyers
to their auctions and the internet bidding helps a lot too. At the end of the
day you will get exactly what your machine is worth."
    The Ritchie Bros. auction calendar currently has 47 upcoming unreserved
industrial auctions and 97 unreserved agricultural auctions. Go to for more details.

    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, Cell: (604) 788-5379 or email:; Or Brian Glenn, Regional Manager, Ritchie Bros.
Auctioneers, Edmonton auction site, tel: (780) 955-2486; Or Alan McVicker,
Regional Manager, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Houston auction site, tel: (713)

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