Canada-based Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (RBA) has introduced a live Internet connection for its auctions, so customers can bid on equipment being sold at many auction sites without physically being there. The site, rbauction Bid-Live, allows customers to follow live auctions, hear the auctioneer and place bids in real-time over the Internet. RBA developed the system in partnership with and Tampa-based software developer Auction Management Solutions.

AMS, which formed a partnership with RBA in 2000, had developed a similar Internet bidding system for wholesale auto auctions. Using this as the core software, RBA then built security and registration features for the rbauction.com web site to ensure that only qualified customers would have access to its online auction service.

Initial testing took place in late 2000 and RBA expects the service will be a full-time offering by the end of this year.