At Ritchie Bros. everyone is treated with equal respect, regardless of the size of their company.
Doug Gordon started his first construction company in Fort Nelson, British Columbia in the 1970s at just 17 years of age. Thanks to dedication and hard work, success quickly followed and with it, the need to find a reliable source of good quality used construction equipment.
Doug attended his first Ritchie Bros. auction in Edmonton in the mid-eighties, purchasing three Terex motor scrapers. Over the following decades he attended dozens more auctions – sometimes as a seller, but more often as a buyer. Doug can still be spotted in the crowd at most Ritchie Bros. auctions in Grande Prairie and Edmonton, but he has also taken to bidding online when an auction item catches his eye.
As a buyer, says Doug, you can be confident that you are paying fair market value for equipment at a Ritchie Bros. auction because "you know you're only one bid higher than someone else equally interested in the same item."
In 2004 Doug decided to disperse his company, Doug Gordon Contracting Ltd., which had established itself as a premier road and oilfield contractor in Western Canada. At the time the company had annual sales of CA$25 million and hundreds of items in its equipment fleet, including motor scrapers, motor graders, excavators, crawler tractors and a large selection of trucks. When it came time to sell, Doug called Ritchie Bros.
"With Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers I can sell equipment packages from any segment of the industry, and the staff are fabulous, from the field sales representatives, to the auctioneers, to the site personnel, to the office staff," says Doug. "Ritchie Bros. auctions are one of the best economic indicators in the construction industry for determining the market value of your company."
The complete dispersal auction was conducted on site at Doug Gordon Contracting in Fort Nelson in June 2004. The auction generated more than CA$20 million in total proceeds – and remains the largest single-owner Canadian auction in Ritchie Bros. history.
Doug believes that the success of the auction – and the success of Ritchie Bros. – has a lot to do with the company's integrity and unwavering commitment to customer service, regardless of whether that customer is buying three motor scrapers or selling 20 million dollars worth of equipment.
"Ritchie Bros. auctions are the definition of professional auctions, and everyone is treated with equal respect, regardless of the size of their company," Doug says. "The credibility of Ritchie Bros. is unsurpassed, and their reputation is so good because of the integrity of the company."
You can still see Doug at Ritchie Bros. auctions buying and selling equipment for his new company, Peace Country Oilfield Contractors Ltd., which he purchased shortly after the 2004 sale. Doug enjoys the new challenges and opportunities his company offers and is looking forward to attending upcoming Ritchie Bros. auctions in Las Vegas – one of his favorite places to buy equipment.
Equipment aside, Doug believes that one of the biggest benefits of buying and selling at Ritchie Bros. auctions is the opportunity to connect with other industry participants – from customers and competitors to industry enthusiasts and Ritchie Bros. staff.
"The auctions are a great place to meet up with your peers in the construction industry," he says. "And I consider some of the longtime staff at Ritchie Bros. to be among my good buddies."
Written and published: 2008