Although the company conducts both business-to-business and fleet owner-to-business auctions, the core of Autorola’s trade is consumer-to-business: private sellers looking to sell their cars, often due to dissatisfaction with the part-exchange price they have been quoted elsewhere. There is no fee for dealers to register cars for auction, just a sliding scale of between £80-£150 plus VAT to be paid on any car bought.
Private individuals pay between £100-£225 inclusive of VAT if their car is sold.
Business development manager Michael Beck believes the service primarily benefits independent dealers. “Larger chains have their own stock sourcing channels, whereas generally independents do not,” he says.
“This way an independent retailer can benefit from having his own broker helping him to source quality stock at competitive prices.”
Founded in Denmark in 1996, Autorola has auctions in Germany, Austria, Holland and Sweden, as well as the UK. Stock is never physically amassed or stored on-site, but is generated from private sellers through various marketing methods.
Autorola’s marketing strategy is predominantly online, with campaigns on both Google and Honest John’s, as well as a link on the Glass’s site where users take advantage of the £3 valuation service. Paper advertising includes Exchange and Mart, Auto Trader and smaller classifieds.
Beck has ambitious targets to sign up half of all UK car dealers to the service within two years.
Autorola currently employs 44 people Europe-wide, four of which are in the UK. It is looking to increase UK staff to around seven to eight, with Beck looking for around three year’s experience for sales executives and 10 year’s for sales managers.