Selling at Auction

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Auction Services

The decision to sell at auction is not to be taken lightly. Blackbird is sensitive to the difficulties one may experience in such a transition. For some, it’s a great method for liquidating assets when retiring or closing a business.

A successful auction is not held, it is staged. Buyers go to auctions to find items which must be sold—regardless of price—while sellers choose auctions to motivate buyers who need what is being sold. A well-staged auction can become an arena for the confrontation of individual wills.

An auction is not simply a sales process. It is also a social process and mechanism for valuing and fixing the price of a particular commodity at a particular place and time. They may appear to be purely economic transactions, but auctions rely on the social interactions generated during the bidding process. The success of an auction depends on these social interactions. The buyer at an auction will often rationalize a seemingly high bid by noting that they only paid a little more than the back-bidder (the bidder at the next lower increment). This rationalization validates the process and fixes the price.

The world’s finest and most unique assets are often sold at auction (think Sotheby’s and Christies), and the stock market is a huge auction of securities that goes on most every weekday. Auctions of real estate have become the prominent method for banks and sellers to sell real estate. The current COVID crisis will likely bring a large wave of commercial, industrial and real estate auctions.

An absolute auction is a sale where there are no minimum bids or reserve prices; every item is sold to the highest bidder on auction day, regardless of price. A sale with reserve is sale where the seller agrees to sell, but only after bidding has reached a certain price that may be disclosed or may be private. A Dutch auction is a sale that starts high and works backward until a buyer agrees to buy at a certain price (the first hand up wins). There are many other variations on the auction based on these three methods.

Blackbird provides auction services for our clients in one of three ways:

  • on a straight commission basis
  • by providing a net minimum guarantee to sellers wishing to mitigate risk
  • by purchasing the assets outright

For anyone in the market for an auctioneer, I highly recommend Blackbird Asset Services for any commercial / industrial auctions. They know their business and take care of their customers.

Corey Duggan

Owner, Duggan & Duggan General Contractor, Inc.

Any worry we had about the risk of selling our business assets with multiple properties at auction was completely put at ease by Blackbird’s professionalism. Not only did Blackbird surpass a previous entirety offer, but they doubled it at auction. To call that a satisfactory outcome would be a severe understatement.


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