A Global Marketplace

IAA Builds a Strong Relationship with Central America's Buyers

Published December 13, 2019 - Written by Dan Oscarson

3 min read


Just beyond Mexico lies the Central American countries of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, and each has a long history of car-buying activity with IAA.

Twenty-five years ago, a relatively small number of brave and adventurous buyers would drive car haulers from these countries to IAA auctions in California, Texas and beyond – sometimes as far as New England – to purchase vehicles for repair and resale in their countries. Their trips would cover thousands of miles and take up to three weeks to acquire just 10 vehicles. These pioneers learned early that damaged cars in the United States were a good value, and they could profit from helping to meet a growing need for affordable transportation in their countries.

The introduction of internet bidding changed everything, however. Over time, thousands of additional buyers realized they could also participate in this lucrative trade without the time and effort of traveling to and attending auctions in person. Today, thousands of buyers and residents are well-acquainted with the IAA brand and recognize us as the source for many vehicles that populate their busy streets. When people can’t afford new cars, our vehicles provide reliable secondhand transportation that more than adequately meets their daily needs. For others, vehicles from IAA represent an opportunity to make money buying, importing, repairing and selling vehicles over and over again.

One such buyer recently attended an IAA seminar in Honduras and told his story. He works for Fruit of the Loom during the day and spends his nights buying and overseeing the repair of vehicles from IAA. In just over one year, he successfully developed his car business to the point where he earned nearly as much from that as from his day job. Stories like this are common, and a growing number of people are benefiting from these vehicles that support local markets.

In September, IAA visited El Salvador and Honduras, conducting buyer registration to attract, educate and sign up new buyers. In addition, seminars were held for existing IAA buyers. Hundreds of people attended these events. New buyers came with copies of business licenses and were prepared to start buying right away. Existing buyers came for a variety of reasons. They learned about what is new at IAA, heard tips and tricks to reduce costs and improve their efficiency, and socialized with other buyers. These events are wonderful opportunities to showcase IAA’s new developments including IAA Timed Auctions™, IAA 360 View™, IAA AuctionNow™, and many of our other innovative new tools designed for buyers’ needs.

The people in Central America are truly appreciative of the opportunity to do something interesting and fun with a product everyone wants to own. We love hearing the buyers say “Thank you for visiting my country”! IAA’s commitment to them will continue via social media content, local marketing alliance partners providing help with registration and shipping, and regular visits to answer their questions and further develop trust in the IAA brand. As we continue with this commitment, competition for vehicles will increase and IAA will maximize selling prices for our vehicle providers.

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