Deal hunters seeking farm equipment have a number of choices these days from dealer-based IronSolutions.com to their local equipment jockey. One player in the used equipment market that's helping move machines globally is IronPlanet.com.
For three years now, IronPlanet has had an ag-only auction. This farm-focused event is now drawing up to 17,000 bidders on the Fridays (one per month) it happens. Paul Blalock, vice president, ag equipment for the auction firm, says that about 35% of the machines sold through the auction move out of the country - Canada, Mexico and Europe are big buyers. And for those machines that stay in the United States, they travel an average of 800 miles from seller to buyer.
The used farm equipment market is a hopping business. For many dealers it's a way to maximize margins. Yet IronPlanet can act as a clearinghouse for dealers who have slow movers that might be more popular in another market.
The auction firm also adds value to the auction sale with its IronClad Assurance program. Blalock says more than 90% of ag machines that sell through the system carry this guarantee. Machines have to be inspected, in person, by someone to earn the IronClad stamp, but Blalock says sellers see the value of the guarantee.
You can read more about this service when your March edition of your favorite Farm Progress publication arrives.