Online hammer smashes records

Online hammer smashes records

Computer hardware resellers are finding good bargains in online auction sites, particularly in the second-hand market.

In June, PC clearing house Computer Source sold nearly $40,000 worth of computers through Fairfax's auction site and managing director Bill Benson is confident the company will soon reach sales of $200,000 a month from selling second-hand equipment over the Internet.

The success of the venture has surprised everyone. "I admit I was a bit of a sceptic at first, and now I am dumbfounded by the success of the venture," Benson said. "Our sales in the computer area are up 500 per cent."Customers can bid for computers for as little as $300 and each computer comes with warranty and support services. The company now sells old machines to Southeast Asia and Russia.

"We built the [computer] business up from nothing," said Benson, who started Computer Source as an adjunct to auction company Dean's Auction Services, to compete in the marketplace. "We are now the largest independent reseller of second-hand computers in Australia."The computers are mostly sourced from government departments and financial institutions. Computer Source currently has more than $1.5 million worth of stock listed on the site and buyers can bid for five, 10 or up to 50 computers at a time.

"The computers are all branded products. It wouldn't work with clones because customers recognise the brand names and we don't get as many problems as with unmarked machines."Benson said the idea of lightning fast turnaround times on computer equipment is "a bit of a furphy".

"There is always room for old IT equipment - even for machines that are 20 years old," he said. "For example, we are sourcing low-end Pentium 120 machines and we are finding these to be a very good stepping stone for someone who hasn't used a PC to start from."The site at, gets around 300 visitors each month and has more than 130,000 registered members, driven by banner advertising from the portal.

Computer Source also takes many orders from regional Australia and is intending to have Australia's first "interactive auction" whereby buyers can bid via the Internet 24 hours prior to traditional auction and use those bids in sale.

Listings on the site vary from month to month. August has seen many laptop computers in the Computer Source catalogue.

"We have been fortunate with banner advertising and customers can buy one or 50 computers at a time. No one else is selling at volume," Benson said. "If a company wants to expand, we can go in and talk to the person to give advice and steer them towards the right computers."

Follow Us

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.


ARN Innovation Awards 2022

Innovation Awards is the market-leading awards program for celebrating ecosystem innovation and excellence across the technology sector in Australia.

EDGE 2022

EDGE is the leading technology conference for business leaders in Australia and New Zealand, built on the foundations of collaboration, education and advancement.

Brand Post

Channel Roadmap

The Channel Roadmap is a bespoke content hub housing strategic priorities from technology vendors for 2022 and beyond, partners can find the guidance on the key technologies and markets to pursue, to help build a blueprint for future success.

Show Comments