DUBAI, UAE, June 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The record-breaking auction conducted by Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers in Dubai, UAE last week had an unusual beneficiary: Foresight, a Dubai-based organization that raises funds to help find a cure for blindness caused by hereditary eye disease and also helps improve the lives of people with visual impairment. Southwest Middle East LLC will donate the full proceeds from the sale of an unused Cat skid steer loader at the auction to Foresight. An on-site bidder from the UAE purchased the skid steer loader for US$30,000.

I'm genuinely lost for words; this has been beyond what we would normally expect, said Sally Prosser, PR Manager at Foresight. From the moment we heard the good news right through until the excitement of the auction, this has been a truly unique and wonderful experience... We try to fund one research project per year and this will certainly allow us to achieve this year's objective. In addition, financial resources are always required to assist us with our ongoing work in the community, assisting those who have lost their sight. Mobility training would be a prime example of this.

The team at Southwest Middle East deserve all of the recognition for this wonderful act of generosity, said Steve Barritt, Ritchie Bros. Regional Manager. I'm delighted that we were able to support their efforts. It was great to see such a large crowd bidding on Day One of our auction, when the skid steer sold. It certainly helped Southwest Middle East achieve the best possible donation for Foresight.

Almost 700 people from 50 countries registered to bid in person or online at the unreserved auction conducted by Ritchie Bros. at its auction site in Dubai on June 1 - 3, 2009. In addition to the charity skid steer loader, Ritchie Bros. sold almost 2,300 heavy equipment items and trucks for more than 220 sellers, generating almost US$46 million in gross auction proceeds - making this the largest Dubai auction in Ritchie Bros. history. For more information, read the news release at

There are 73 unreserved Ritchie Bros. auctions on the auction calendar at, including the Company's next auction at its Dubai auction site (August 10 - 12, 2009).

About Ritchie Bros.

Established in 1958, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (NYSE and TSX: RBA) is the world's largest industrial auctioneer, selling more equipment to on-site and online bidders than any other company in the world. The Company has over 110 locations in more than 25 countries including 38 auction sites worldwide. Ritchie Bros. sells, through unreserved public auctions, a broad range of used and unused industrial assets, including equipment, trucks and other assets utilized in the construction, transportation, agricultural, material handling, mining, forestry, petroleum and marine industries. The Company maintains a web site at and sponsors an equipment wiki at

Investors and potential investors should note that this information may not be indicative of the overall financial performance of the Company for this or any period.

For more information contact: Steve Barritt, Regional Manager, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Dubai auction site tel: +971-4-812-0600 Or Alexander Ypeij, Communications Specialist Europe, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers Tel: +31-765-242-600 or email: Or Kim Schulz, Manager, Corporate Communications, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Mobile: +1-604-788-5379 or email: