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History of Rasmus Auctioneers
If you haven’t read the first part of our history yet, click here to catch up!
Now that Ron had his hands on some quality products he needed somewhere to put all of it and ended up buying a warehouse. Ron’s daughter Kathleen (who you have probably talked to if you have called our office) decided to join her father in this venture and began to work with him doing all of the administrative duties that accompanied this new job. Around this same time, his son Chris was graduating from Virginia Tech with the intention of going into the business of marketing to the quickly aging baby boomer generation. To his surprise, his father suggested that Chris come work for him instead and flattered by the offer from a man who was known to fly solo, Chris accepted the challenge…and the rest is history.
Ron and Chris quickly built a buyer base as lawyers and businessmen started purchasing their used furniture. These customers also evolved into their clients, and a few of those lawyers were on the Board of Trustees. Soon Ron and Chris were appraising people’s belongings after they went bankrupt, since they were already highly educated in the value of used furniture, equipment and the like.
After a while when they realized what Ron and Chris could do, simply appraising the items was not enough. Trustees began to ask the duo to do more and more and become more involved with the bankruptcy process as time went on. These requests ranged from changing the locks on a building that had gone into foreclosure to throwing out sour milk in disconnected refrigerators and eventually, auctioning off the items once appraised. Every single request was met with one answer: “Sure we can!”
Since Ron a) did not know how to auctioneer and b) really had no interest or skills in speaking to or entertaining a crowd he handed Chris $500 and sent him off in a minivan to North Carolina for two weeks to attend the Mendenhall School of Auctioneering. It was there that Chris learned the good old fashioned art of auctioneering, and mastered the classic auctioneer’s chant.
If any of you ever got the chance to see Chris chant back in the day at a live auction, you would never think that he was so nervous his first few auctions that he couldn’t even introduce himself and the sale. But Chris took to auctioneering quickly and Chris and Ron became the guys to call when someone went bankrupt, as they could handle the process from start to finish.
Unfortunately like anything where the courts are involved, there was a lot of paperwork that went along with bankruptcy auctions. Chris and Ron were doing all of the work, collecting the money, then having to give all of it to the court and subsequently petition the court for their 10% share of the money back. They came to find that more often that not, with all of the time, money, and man-hours that this job required, the process was just not worth it and the Rasmus men were, once again, broke.
This was when they decided it was time to flip the script, and start doing things their own way…
To find out what happens next check back for Rasmus’ History Part III on the blog!