Kuni Automotive will wholesale its used vehicles on multiple remarketing platforms to its own stores and to other buyers.
The Vancouver, Wash., group, which has 16 stores in four states, has directed Alliance Inspection Management to create a Web platform that would feed Kuni's wholesale used-vehicle inventory listings to ADESA.com, OVE.com, and SmartAuction for sale on the platforms simultaneously.
So far, rental-car companies and finance institutions have led in multiplatform selling. Kuni's interest indicates that large dealership groups may embrace the technology for both buying and selling vehicles.
Kuni COO Joe Herman says posting on multiple platforms would expose the vehicles to dealerships within the group that could use them but didn't know they were available. It also would make the vehicles available externally and speed the wholesale disposal process.
He says he wants the process up and running before the year end.
"This would serve us internally and serve the market as well," Herman says. "We haven't done this yet but I can't imagine it not working. They're already listing cars for the rental companies, so the same thing would work for a retail group."
Kuni's dealerships, which sell mostly luxury marques -- in Washington, Oregon, Colorado and California, retail about 1,000 used vehicles a month with revenue expected to exceed $1 billion this year, Herman says.
The group ranks No. 49 on the Automotive News list of the top 100 U.S. dealership groups based on used-vehicle retail sales, with retail used sales of 9,411 in 2012. The group also wholesaled 3,697 units in 2012.
Herman says Kuni is always looking for technological advances that will help it sell new and used vehicles more efficiently. About 31/2 years ago the group began using used-vehicle inventory management tools and advanced digital and Web search techniques. Its retail used sales have grown about 20 percent compounded each year over that period.
"It's all about the velocity of how you acquire, sell, dispose of and redeploy capital to acquire inventory," he says.
Herman is not bothered that technology does not allow competitive bidding across the remarketing platforms. Currently, the technology removes a vehicle listing from competing platforms once bidding on that vehicle reaches its reserve on one platform, to prevent bidding on a vehicle that already has been sold.
He says the companies that created the technology will figure out that next step because it is an "extremely efficient way of disposing of vehicles."