Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Military Turns to Online Auctions to Unload Unwanted Gear

Nineties-era Humvees can be had for $7,000. Dump trucks and tractors that once trudged through warzones start at $15,000. And construction cranes that helped build military outposts bear price tags from $20,000 to $23,000. Most are in good working order and many of the trucks have surprisingly low mileage.
These are some of the 1,300 pieces of surplus military hardware that will be
up for auction September 7. “Every Wednesday we sell 350 to 400 items,” says Jeffrey L. Holmes, senior vice president of government solutions and auction management at GovPlanet.
GovPlanet, based in Pleasanton, California, is the government-focused arm of used-equipment marketplace IronPlanet. The company won a six-year contract from the Defense Logistics Agency to help offload surplus inventory that has accumulated over decades.

Holmes, a former Army officer and long-time defense industry executive, is insistent that the military should sell off aging forklifts, cranes, trucks and trailers sooner, rather than later.

Iron mountains of surplus inventory sit all over the United States. If it’s not needed by the military, why not sell it? “They bought a lot, and not all the equipment got used as often as they had anticipated,” Holmes tells National Defense. “This isn’t junk. There is some junk, but some good value. And every piece of equipment comes with a full inspection report.”