A new livestock sales platform idea is sweeping the stud sector.

Yourbid was developed during the Covid-19 lockdown period earlier this year by the Giddings family as an online platform to host the sale of sheep and cattle bred at Meadowslea, their South Canterbury base west of Fairlie.

Meadowslea principal David Giddings is quick to give his son George credit for leading the development of the website platform, but says it’s already catching on elsewhere in the world because of its simplicity and the pressure-free opportunity it presents for buyers to consider their purchases.

“It’s gone ballistic really,” he says.

Meadowslea formulated an agreement with a stud operation in the United Kingdom which used the new platform last month for the first time. The sale generated more than 1700 bids on 110 rams and produced a record gross revenue, smashing the previous best average price by 40%.

Giddings says Yourbid offers registered buyers the chance to view the catalogue of stock and videos over several days once the sale catalogue is open for viewing. They can place bids and watch progress on each lot right up to the sale closing time.

“It gives people time to consider their buying decisions. They can watch a video of each lot, talk it over with others in the family or their agent, and make a decision to place a bid or not.”

“Yourbid means buyers can buy based on their own order of choice, rather than by lot number as they have to now with a traditional auction sale.”

The Giddings’ have used videos in the past to showcase animals and the Helmsman ‘silent’ auction system for previous sheep sales. They plan to host their third NZ Yourbid sale with their annual yearling bull sale closing on October 9. Buyers register on the platform to view each sale catalogue and a commission is still paid to the livestock firms that are involved with each purchaser. Bids are also anonymous to other bidders and only the buyer’s number is displayed alongside the lot number and price until the conclusion of the sale when all buyers’ details appear on the screen. All registrations and buyer details are retained by the vendor which allows dialogue and advice to be shared in the days leading up to the sale. Buyers are encouraged to bid until the sale ends and provided there are no further bids within two minutes of a sale’s official ending, the sale finishes and the top bidder for each lot is notified of their success.

If a bid comes in within that two minutes on a particular lot or lots, the sale continues until that two minute minimum deadline is reached. Giddings says local agents have embraced the platform because they also have time to review and offer advice on specific lots to their clients, which helps to enhance their service. The first ram auction in NZ using the Yourbid platform will be the Meadowslea Ram sale offering 300 rams closing on November 26 followed by the Glenloe Dohne Merino offering of 40 two-tooth rams by stud principal, Richard Loe, Waimakiriri Gorge, closing on December 10.

Visit yourbid.org to find out more and view a demonstration auction.