In this Global Marketplace article, IAA Vice President of Global Business Development Dan Oscarson discusses the value of listening to and learning from our international buyer community in Mexico.

International markets continue to be an important segment of our customer base and a significant factor in how we obtain industry-leading returns for our vehicle sellers. I’m proud to play a part in developing IAA’s global markets while traveling and meeting buyers all over the world.

IAA sells vehicles to foreign-based buyers every day. The individuals behind these transactions are incredible, hard-working people who face unique challenges in their day-to-day efforts to run their businesses, while also better providing for themselves and their families. One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is building IAA’s reputation as trustworthy, reliable, and accessible to our buyers. It’s a privilege to interact with entire communities and see firsthand how IAA sustains the value of a vehicle over its life for the benefit of people around the world. As we extend our brand around the globe, IAA is taking the opportunity to make these very real connections.

During a trip to Mexico in March, we were able to meet, interact, and receive feedback from many of our buyers in the region.  We learned about what they value in their experience with IAA, and where they see opportunity.  One of the things buyers in Mexico value most is accurate vehicle descriptions.  We’ve listened to our partners and now offer more than 300 details available for each VIN. IAA buyers around the world now have access to more data points of information on each vehicle than we have ever offered before.

The long-standing camaraderie between IAA and our Mexican buyers is thriving because we meet with them face-to-face and have an in-country auction representative dedicated to assisting our buyers in this vehicle market. Having a dedicated auction representative, working on our behalf, allows us to facilitate daily interaction and communication with our buyers.  This ensures they have a point of contact if they need it.

Our close relationship also allows us to gain important insights that guide us toward new business opportunities, reinforcing our strong selling infrastructure. It’s also critical that we continue providing exceptional tools in Mexico because the government is under pressure from domestic auto manufacturing groups to support new-vehicle sales making importing and selling cars more challenging for used-vehicle buyers. Our buyers are resilient however, and we’re proud to be an essential part of their business model.

Listening to buyers and learning their preferences enables IAA to respond with the solutions they need, including technology that makes buying easier. For example, managing the title process can be challenging for buyers who purchase large numbers of vehicles – even in the United States. When we launched a new title instruction enhancement, we took steps to ensure our international buyers had the information they needed to begin using it.

Beyond the obvious language, currency, time zone and cultural differences, international buyers face unique challenges that few of us can imagine. They entrust IAA with their business because of the in-person relationships that we have established and continue to develop. In today’s competitive auction landscape, those connections are a win-win-win for buyers abroad, for IAA, and for our vehicle sellers.

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