Superfast broadband connectivity is important, not just to Watts Auctions’ own business operations but to those of our customers too.
That’s why we have been involved in the DigiChampz Initiative, a European Commission-funded project which is examining ways in which to unlock the opportunities and benefits of the digital economy across the UK. The South Pennines region has provided policy makers in London and Brussels with the rural case study on how local businesses, community groups and residents are making full use of information technology and the Internet to achieve their goals.
As a firm of specialist auctioneers we have a wealth of experience in hosting and managing auction events for single and multiple vendors throughout the UK. We also have customers all over the world, exporting equipment to countries such as in Europe and Africa.
We hold a regular traditional auction in our Carlton Auction Facility every five weeks where customers can either bid in person or online. The firm also holds regular timed online auctions. The Internet, timed and live online bidding have all become integral parts of the firm’s global business strategy.
Our customers no longer need to travel to the yard if they prefer to bid online, saving them both time and money. Equally, timed online auctions mean that vendors can keep the items for sale at their own premises rather than having to pay the transport costs to take them to the yard sale in Carlton.
Both the company and our customers need access to superfast broadband so that Internet bidding can work well for everyone. If broadband goes down during a Saturday morning’s yard sale (which attracts overs 3,500 lots), customers bidding online will suddenly be unable to do so. Commissions are lost and it is never the broadband supplier who is first line for complaint. Rather, it’s us. We want to make sure that this does not happen and that our customers continue to enjoy the Watts experience, built upon our reputation for quality service and customer care.
The firm uses the i-bidder e auction software provided by ATG Media. The real time bidding software is similar to that used for commodity and derivatives trading. But, rural areas robust, fast broadband connectivity is often a problem. We are working with relevant organisations to help change this so that our customers can enjoy the benefits of doing business with us, online.
Watts Auctions Director John Roebuck said:
“The internet has given us this amazing vehicle to reach out to our markets. However its not much use to us if it keeps breaking down or fails to deliver the goods on time. Someone else will beat us there.”
“The Watts Auctions case study – live online bidding – is probably the most convincing argument for any business to require fit-for-purpose, reliable and fast broadband.”
“We’re pleased to see the company presenting the case for grassroots super connectivity to senior digital policy decision makers in the European Commission and UK government.”