Donington Park auction goes live

Aston Barclay’s new 18-acre Donington Park Mega Centre auction opened on 28 September as one of the most technologically advanced new physical auctions anywhere in Europe.

North West Leicestershire MP Andrew Bridgen officially opened the centre just four months after the multi-million pound investment – led by new CEO Neil Hodson and Rutland Partners – which aims to double sales to 160,000 vehicles over the next five years.

Over 250 used cars were sold at the launch sale on behalf of blue-chip vendors such as Zenith, Moto Novo Finance, PSA, Motability, Hertz, Activa Contracts and Moneyway with over 150 buyers in attendance.

The new flagship Donington site is the fifth in the Aston Barclay network and can accommodate 400 used cars undercover and its modern new glass partitioned auction halls enable two auctions to be run simultaneously.

The launch sale is the first in a weekly fleet sales programme each Thursday from 10am, with a Tuesday dealer sale to be launched on 17 October, also starting at 10am.

Creating 25 full-time and up to 35 part-time jobs, the new site, which is situated next door to the Donington Park motor racing circuit and East Midlands Airport, boasts a range of digital technologies, many of which are new to the UK remarketing industry.

For example, GardX SpinCar technology gives remote buyers and those using its new Buyer App a 360-degree view online of a used car’s exterior and interior. A zoom facility allows buyers to take a closer look at each part of the car which further adds confidence to buying remotely.

In addition, banks of six Mega Screens are installed to show the sale’s running order as well as providing exposure for vendor branding and buyer offers and incentives.

Also, digital pods are positioned in the auction halls to enable buyers to search for stock from across the group and to check on provisional bids, while a new buyer app has already been downloaded over 2,000 times in two months with a new Vendor App set for launch at the end of the year.

Donington is also home to a new Buyer Services team which will look after the needs of the group’s loyal and growing buyer base.

Neil Hodson, Aston Barclay’s chief executive, said, ‘Our vision for the group and Donington in particular from the outset was to introduce a range of new digital technologies that were going to make the remarketing experience more interactive and bridge the gap between the physical hall and the mobile space for both buyers and sellers, all supported by a first-class team.

‘Buyers and vendors have responded very positively to the new technologies and there is still much more to come which will further integrate the buying and selling community. Donington has a first class team in place and overall we have appointed 50 new colleagues across the group since May so we are moving into 2018 in very good shape.’