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Readers get bidding online in KZN

Independent Newspapers KZN's weekly Sunday Tribune and daily morning title, The Mercury, have launched a first-in-Africa online auction.
Readers get bidding online in KZNAn 'event' auction, bidding goes live at 9am on Sunday, October 8 and closes at 8pm on Wednesday, October 18. Already open for browsing at, the site has a total of 450 items valued at R2.37 million on offer.

The concept was developed in Vancouver, Canada, and effectively marries the power of print and the pull of the internet. It was so successful in Canada that it was developed as a franchise and exported to the USA, Europe, England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and now, for the first time on this continent, to South Africa.

It differs from the eBay type continuous on-line auctions in that it is a dynamic event auction, lasting only 10 days. The relatively short period of live bidding creates urgency and reader-bidder interaction. When it's over, readers can look forward to the next event auction, a couple of months down the line.

The Sunday Tribune and The Mercury are ideal participating newspapers because of their readership profiles and the high internet literacy among readers.

In the run-up to going live, prospective bidders are invited to view items of interest in the dealers' showrooms and to register on the BidnSave website as a bidder. On registration a bidder receives a unique bidder ID that is used to register bids, as well as a return of email information. Bidding can be done in one of three ways:
  • Live bidding by the bidder on the website
  • Proxy bidding by the BidnSave System in pre-stated increments and up to a pre-stated maximum stipulated by the bidder
  • Phone-in bidding

    Once the reserve is met, the item is considered "sold" even if it doesn't attract one single rand more than the reserve by the time the auction closes. Each time a bid is successful, the leading bidder's username is displayed and once the reserve is met, this fact is recorded.

    When the auction closes, the winning bidders are advised electronically or by telephone and transfer the winning bid amount to Independent Newspapers. Once payment is received, they are provided with a certificate of purchase to collect the goods, voucher or service from the dealer. Independent Newspapers retains the winning bid amount and the advertiser is provided with an advertising credit to the full retail value of the item sold. So it's a win, win win situation!

  • Editorial contact
    Independent Newspapers KZN
    John Millar
    (031) 308 2108

    29 Sep 2006 14:12



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