South African asset sales and services group, the Alliance Group recently beat competitors from around the globe to clinch the two top awards - 2008 Grand Champions of the Year and 2008 Auction of the Year - at the 2008 National Auctioneers Association (NAA) International Auction Marketing Competition, sponsored by global media giant, USA Today.
In an announcement from the NAA headquarters in Kansas City, it was confirmed that Cape Town-based Alliance Group has brought these awards (a total of 11) back to South Africa. The group won both these awards in 2005 and now has won a total of 26 NAA international marketing awards over the past four years.
There were in excess of 6000 auction companies eligible for these awards and according to Bob Shively, CEO of the NAA, “This is an even bigger deal than ever before, as USA Today did the judging and was blown away Alliance Group's presentation.”
"Thrilled with result"
“We are thrilled with the result and being the only company to win Grand Champions and Auction of the Year Awards twice is really incredible for us,” says marketing director Ronen Jackson. “Our marketing team has worked incredibly hard to differentiate ourselves in the market and in rebranding our company to Alliance Group over the past year. Not only is this great for us, but for all auctioneers in South Africa - as well the local marketing industry.”
The National Auctioneers Association represents 15 000 auctioneer companies around the world, with the largest group coming from the US where the auction industry is growing in leaps and bounds. In 2007, US$270 billion worth of asset and services were sold at North American auctions.
The ‘Auction of the Year' was awarded for Alliance Group's marketing efforts at the March 2008 auction of a beachfront property in Camps Bay which sold for R44 million. According to Alliance Group CEO Rael Levitt, “This is a shot in the arm for both the local property and marketing industries. The fact that a sale of a Camps Bay property won the auction of the year against an American market, which sells over a trillion rand in assets, says a lot about South Africans and our ability to compete in global markets.”
Successful rebranding exercise
Auction Alliance changed its name to the Alliance Group last year to reflect the company's expansion out of auctions only, and according to Jackson, who won the 2007 Sunday Times Emergent Marketer of the Year, these awards come after a very successful rebranding exercise.
“We knew that the marketing work we produce is of an international standard but to win such a coveted global competition for a second time shows that South African companies are up there when it comes to marketing. Whilst awards are fun and a great sense of achievement, it's all about improving our marketing services which ultimately benefit our clients. The key is to never stop innovating.”
The honours will be officially announced and awarded at a gala event on 10 July 2008 in Nashville, Tennessee, US.