Omniland Auctioneers, owned and managed by Mr Roderick Roets is an auction house that has been in business since 1987 and has over the years seen success in running unique cycad auctions that have performed remarkably. We’ve recently met up with their sole director, Mr Roets on what the auction house has in the pipeline.
The Auctioneer – Give us a little back-story about your business.
Mr Roderick Roets – Who started it? Started by Mr Deon Botha and Mr Piet Verster in 1987. Mr Roderick Roets joined Omniland in 2009 and became a member of Omniland CC. Eventually, Mr Botha retired and Mr Roets is now the sole director of Omniland (Pty) Ltd.
The Auctioneer – Do you have any pertinent lessons from your years in the auction industry?
Mr Roderick Roets – Always be honest and don’t hide any information.
The Auctioneer – What is the biggest achievement you celebrated in the auction industry?
Mr Roderick Roets – OMNILAND has a huge database of cycad collectors and has held various cycad auctions in this niche market. The highest recorded sale was a 2,1m E. woodii that was sold at an auction in Phalaborwa for more than R2,3 million.
The Auctioneer – In your opinion, what has been the key to your success?
Mr Roderick Roets – Honesty, hard work and gathering all the necessary information regarding the sales lots as well as quick turnaround time.
The Auctioneer – What’s the most expensive thing you’ve auctioned?
Mr Roderick Roets – Probably a farm
The Auctioneer – Care to share for how much?
Mr Roderick Roets – Can’t recall the exact selling price.
The Auctioneer – Who calls the bids at your auctions?
Mr Roderick Roets – Roderick Roets.
The Auctioneer – Can you call bids?
Mr Roderick Roets – Yes
The Auctioneer – Have you (or any of your other bid callers) ever entered a bid calling competition?
Mr Roderick Roets – No
The Auctioneer – Can you explain why the auctioneer chant works?
Mr Roderick Roets – Creates a nice atmosphere and gets the buyers pumped up.
The Auctioneer – How would you define a successful auction?
Mr Roderick Roets – If you walk away from an auction and your buyer and seller are both satisfied with the price achieved.
The Auctioneer – What makes a great auctioneer?
Mr Roderick Roets – Honesty and excellent communication with all buyers and sellers.
The Auctioneer – If you had a piece of advice for an auctioneer starting out now, what would it be?
Mr Roderick Roets – Work hard and be honest. It is not as easy as everybody thinks it is.
The Auctioneer – How do you feel about online auctions?
Mr Roderick Roets – We are still old school and like to have on-site auctions where the buyer can see and feel what his buying. In saying that, online auctions are increasingly becoming more popular, and we the whole industry will have to adapt.
The Auctioneer – Where do you think the auction industry will be in 1 year… 5 years?
Mr Roderick Roets – More and more online auctions but I still believe that there will always be a place for onsite, live auction in the industry.