KAR leaders on automated auctioneering, Cash for Clunkers & running no cars through lane

By Joe Overby
Senior Editor

CARY, N.C. – Not to get too philosophical here, but as it turns out, necessity is indeed the mother of invention — and that includes the auto auction business.

What started off as a “tool of necessity” for KAR Global as it rebooted auction sales in early April has emerged as another digital auction sales alternative — and one the company can run remotely, using an automated auctioneer and all-digital interactions between buyers and sellers.

KAR chief executive officer Jim Hallett and chief financial officer Eric Loughmiller discussed this new platform called Simulcast+ and more with Auto Remarketing in a wide-ranging interview that touched on vehicle storage plans, thoughts on a potential Cash for Clunkers program and the possibility of re-opening physical auctions with no vehicles running through the lanes.

From necessity to an extra plus

On March 20, KAR announced a two-week stoppage of all ADESA physical sale operations (which included Simulcast) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As it began to restart auction sales, “we had our first-ever fully digital auction that was operated remotely with an automated auctioneer and all buyers and sellers interacting through our Simulcast platform,” Hallett said during the company’s latest earnings call.

“Simulcast+ has allowed us to sell vehicles from locations that were shut down. KAR Global is the first mover in the use of this technology where there is an automated auctioneer and we’re very encouraged with the initial results,” he said.

Read the complete article on autoremarketing.com (paywall).

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