Brand New Premium Online Auction Platform Launches

The Daily Vroom

Hey Vroomers,

Rise and shine! In today's special edition of the Daily Vroom, we've got something very different just for you—an exclusive chat with none other than Alex Hirschi, aka Supercar Blondie. With an impressive following of over 110 million enthusiasts, Alex stands at the forefront of automotive entertainment.

She's nothing short of a dynamo. Today, Alex and the crew over at SB Media are rolling out their state-of-the-art online auction platform, SBX Cars and let me tell you, it's like nothing you've ever seen before.

So, grab your morning brew and dive into our captivating interview with Alex. Get the scoop on her vision and feast your eyes on some of the jaw-dropping rides making their debut on the platform.

Exclusive Interview With Supercar Blondie

Just before we get to the interview, for those of you not in the loop about Supercar Blondie, let me give you the lowdown. Hailing from Brisbane, Alex Hirschi, aka Supercar Blondie, took the social media world by storm from Dubai, creating a digital empire in 2017 with her co-pilot and husband, Nik. This dynamic duo turned a passion for autos into SB Media, a powerhouse brand that's all about the glitz of cars, tech, and luxury, captivating an audience of over 110 million global followers. With their crew, they've shifted gears into a multimedia phenomenon, producing content that spans the spectrum from supercars to gaming.

(The Daily Vroom)TDV: The auction platform space is crowded, yet you’ve always had a knack for standing out. What inspired you to launch your own platform in this competitive arena, and how did you pinpoint the perfect moment to dive in?

(Alex Hirschi) SB: The idea for launching this platform came about after collectors and dealers around the world would reach out to me to ask if I knew where they could find a very rare car, or if I knew of a buyer for something they wanted to sell. It was obvious that there was no centralised space for these collectors to go to, to find each other.

As my main gig was spent building my media business, I couldn’t find the time to pick up the phone and ring around to try and connect them. This platform addresses that issue.

Our platform stands out in a number of ways. We are the first platform to solely focus on high end cars and special vehicles and whilst other platforms cater to one market, either America or Europe, we are a global platform, with cars listed from Asia to the Middle East, Europe and the Americas.

For some time, there was doubt cast on whether you could sell multi-million dollar cars on a digital auction platform. This doubt has now gone, with many rare vehicles having successfully been sold online.

This is the perfect time to create a global marketplace that only focuses on these vehicles, and create a space for them where the user experience feels and looks premium and your auction listing won’t get lost amongst hundreds of lower valued enthusiast cars.

TDV: Your brand is a powerhouse in the supercar universe. How will this prestigious reputation shape the platform’s identity and selection of vehicles?

SB: Our niche and identity for the last seven years when we started Supercar Blondie has always been on finding the world’s most unique and rarest cars. The brand has been built on surprising our community with rare vehicles. Our auction platform will do the same.

When we asked our global community, partners, collectors, dealers and OEM’s their expectations of us launching a digital auction platform, they said they would expect us to bring multiple world’s first and rare vehicles not even in-house auctions would be able to offer.

Combined with the low fee structure (5% buyers commission), speed to list your car and no logistic costs of having to move a multi million dollar car to a physical auction space, combined with the large media attention we can create to each listing (115 million followers with 2 billion views per month on average), this will give us a competitive edge over traditional auction houses.

We would not have been able to launch with over $100 million in consigned cars with a platform that no one’s ever seen before if they didn’t have the belief in our brand to do so. We are incredibly thankful and humbled to all the partners that have been part of this launch so early on and having consigned cars in more than 10 countries.

TDV: It’s clear your approach is distinct, focusing on a more curated experience rather than the volume seen elsewhere. How will this set you apart?

SB: The platform has been built from scratch with a premium user experience at the forefront of development. As soon as you go on the site, it will look different to any other auction platform with a high focus on top quality photography that’s usually reserved for in-house auctions only.

We also have a focus on customer service, as we know how important it is to sellers of valuable vehicles, to feel like there is someone to talk to, and guide them through the process. Our team of auction specialists and customer service representatives are based currently in the US, London and Dubai, and as we grow, we will have more specialists stationed in other regions.

While other platforms do list some premium cars, the listing looks and feels the same as any other. It was important to us to make sure that if a multi-million dollar car was listed, that it was only listed alongside other premium cars.

TDV: The buzz around a launch is vital, but the real challenge is keeping the platform fresh and engaging. What strategies do you have in place to continuously attract top-tier listings that keep enthusiasts coming back?

SB: We have a team of 15 people that solely search for the world’s rarest cars globally. Depending on the demand for those cars, we will expand that team even further.

On top of that, over the last seven years we have built strong connections in the car community that we leverage to bring unique cars and collections for sale. Because we don’t focus on volume, the rarity of each car that we bring to public will generate more buzz each time, as we and other media outlets will cover it.

Lastly, given our media reach, we expect there will be inbound submissions on the site. When you have cars that you can’t buy anywhere else, we would expect enthusiast to keep checking our auctions for those rarities.

TDV: Your influence has been pivotal in everything you’ve touched. As you embark on this new venture, how do you foresee your involvement in the platform’s day-to-day operations, ensuring it thrives under your guidance?

SB: I have an incredible team. I am by no means an auction specialist and that’s why it’s been a focus over the last year to find the best in the business to make sure this platform runs smoothly and everyone has a great user experience.

We have hired a strong and very experienced management team with Lance Butler, our auction director and Abdulla Khan our Chief Technology Officer building and running our tech platform. Alex Morris our Chief Creative Officer leads our content and media strategy, Caspar Norman our Chief Operating Officer ensures our processes and legal framework is solid and Nik Hirschi our Co-Founder & CEO ensures our strategy is executed.

My role will be to continue as I have been, building connections within the car world, and personally calling and visiting SBX clients to consign collections and attend key events as well as get feedback on their experience.

I will also continue my role on camera to travel around the world and bring attention to the most exclusive cars listed. We have 4 other full time presenters on our channels now so I can dedicate more of my time to SBX and the other business we launched last year, our car design studio SB Design, led by Brano Mauks.

TDV: The Cybertruck as your first listing was a bold statement. What motivated this choice, and how does it signal the direction of the platform?

SB: The Cybertruck is arguably the hottest new car of the year. I recently got to drive it in LA, and it is with no doubt amongst the top 3 attention grabbing cars I’ve ever driven. Hollywood buses would go on detours and stop to take pictures, people scream from their windows with their thumbs up and I even saw someone nearly fall over from cranking their neck so hard to see it pass.

Our company vision is “We Live to Wow”. The Cybertruck sets the tone for that vision and the entire site going forward. When you go on SBX Cars, we want the reaction toalways be Wow, just like it was when people saw the Cybertruck. We are starting with just one auction, with the Cybertruck at NO reserve. The rest of the cars will follow shortly after and can be all seen in our preview section.

TDV: Your audience is incredibly broad and diverse, which is a unique strength. How do you see this as an advantage in drawing both buyers and sellers, especially for those high-stakes, high-value transactions?

SB: Yes we have followers in all age groups, but predominantly between 25-40. These younger collectors are used to a more digital world. We also have a diverse following geographically, with our main audience in the USA, followed by Europe and Asia.

We’ve come to see that collectors in some of these markets haven’t adequately been catered to. They can not always travel overseas to in-house auctions to buy cars and have found it hard to find their dream cars only through connections.

With the rise of the tech billionaire, we’ve had feedback from them to say it’s not convenient to buy multi-million dollar cars because they have to travel to them. This platform means anyone can buy a car from their laptop at home. We have many wealthy people who follow us, many collectors who follow us, but there is also a lot of people who just love cars and dream to own something special one day.

With our reach, the car may not be seen by exactly the person who wants to buy it, but what will happen is, someone, somewhere will see the video, share with a friend, who shares it with a friend and the right buyer eventually sees the car.

Furthermore for large collectors, they usually have a collection manager who is responsible to search for the right cars and would keep an eye on the right auction platform to not miss it. This is the power of this kind of reach. We don’t claim to have every collector on the planet follow us, but through our videos, we know that they will through friends, or their network, become aware of the car on our site.

TDV: The auction of a LaFerrari for $5.3 million set records in the online space. What’’s your game plan for facilitating even more lucrative transactions on your Platform?

SB: I think it’s important to recognize that the online platform is just a tool for accessing cars around the world and is not exclusive to a certain type of vehicle. Multi-million dollar cars are transacted daily, whether through a dealership, private broker, or at a traditional in-person auction house.

Online auction platforms have been thought of as hands free, automated tools for buying and selling cars. For SBX Cars, building relationships with our users and providing a high level of service are key functions in being able to sell cars that would historically be offered at different venues.

We want our users to know that we are here to work on their behalf to buy, sell, and enjoy their cars in a way they won’t find anywhere else at much lowers costs, logistical ease, price transparency and connecting the global car community together.

TDV: You’ve mastered the art of engaging a wide audience while keeping content premium. How will you apply this skill to maintain broad appeal without compromising the platform’s high-end feel?

SB: We want this platform to be an exciting place for everyone to come and visit, even if you don’t have the intention of buying. We have two different accounts – one for general users and one for bidders. In order to make sure bidders have the capability to follow through on their purchase, we will require a credit card and ID to register as a bidder.

On the other hand, for everyone else, our comments section will be open to participate in the auction. However, if the comments section becomes unconstructive, and turns in to a free for all that mirrors any other social platform, then we will limit comments to only registered bidders in order to keep the information in that section relevant to the buyer.

We’ve also spent a long time making the user experience feel like eye candy. Even for those not bidding, it is exciting to scroll through the listings and see what is available. Our aim is to have cars for sale that you won’t see on any other platform, which keeps this platform fresh and fun to be a part of.

TDV: You’ve built an empire on your personal brand, which has been instrumental in your success. How will you continue to infuse your unique touch into the auction platform without overextending yourself?

SB: Our brand was built with just myself and my husband. In 2020, due to covid, we had to rethink how we could proceed without relying on travel and just my time.

We started expanding our team and now have a full time team of 65 people. I’m grateful to have that support as it means i’ve been able to focus on strategy and how to diversify, rather than just presenting on camera every day. I have confidence that I’ll be able to contribute to SBX in strategic ways without overextending, purely because I have great trust in my team and we already have multiple onscreen presenters.

TDV: How important is it for you to hire individuals who not only bring professional expertise in this space but also share a genuine passion for cars?

SB: We’ve built a community of over 100M followers and understand that community is at the center of everything we do. For our users, it’s passion that drives their desire to use our platform. Understanding this passion is what helps us make decisions that create a tool that serves collectors and enthusiasts alike.

Our SBX team is made up of people that have years of auction experience both in- person and online and truly love the collector car world. On the classic side, we even have expertise on restoration of pre-war cars. Our team understands how the industry works and why cars have more meaning than just monetary value. We want our users to know that the team helping them buy and sell cars care just as much about their collection as they do.

TDV: Capturing the right audience for unique listings is crucial. What marketing strategies will you employ to ensure these listings shine and reach their target demographic?

SB: Firstly we leverage our wide reach on our own social channels and have also set up new dedicated SBX Cars social channels where we create custom auction content. Secondly, most content creator founded businesses don’t have traditional media websites. Over the last 3 years we’ve been building our journalistic team and built Today that website drives millions of unique visitors each month and has been used by other traditional auction houses to promote their listings.

We will heavily leverage our website to write stories each day on specific auction listings. Thirdly, the more unique and rare the listings are the more media attention they will get with other media outlets, as it becomes newsworthy content for them that we provide.

Fourthly, we have a wide network via our newsletter and lastly we will share unique cars via our auction team directly to potential buyers. Again because we don’t play the volume game we can give more attention to each auction to bring the right buyers & eyeballs. We are also able to apply paid media strategies to further enhance our already unrivalled automotive reach.

TDV: Everything you’ve done so far has been nothing short of phenomenal. Looking ahead, where do you see SBX Cars in a year from now? What milestones and achievements are you aiming for?

SB: Our goal is to continue to find the best cars around the world and to be a resource for collectors to buy, sell, and enjoy their hobby. We want to connect the global audience we’ve built over the last several years in a way that supports the industry and gets people excited to use their cars and build their collections.

We have big plans for rolling out services that support this goal. When we launch, you will see functionalities that have never before been rolled out on a digital auction site. We’re excited to show the world what we think the future of digital auction platforms look like.

Thank you for the opportunity to speak with The Daily Vroom community.

My Take on the SBX Cars Launch:

Launching a new platform is no small feat. To really make waves, you've got to bring something unique to the table. Enter SBX Cars, armed with Supercar Blondie's colossal 110 million-strong follower base and an unparalleled network within the car industry. This isn't just about star power; it's about leveraging those connections to roll out some of the most exclusive vehicles to the market. And, while not every ride will command a $5 million+ price tag, they're aiming for uniqueness as a key criterion for listings.

Diving Deeper into Strategy:

What sets SBX apart isn't just the glittering roster of cars they're introducing at launch, valued at over $100 million. It's also their savvy recruitment strategy, bringing in experts seasoned in the online auction arena. This isn't just smart; it's strategic, ensuring that the platform has the technical prowess to match its ambitious vision.

The Showstoppers:

The lineup for their launch is nothing short of spectacular. We're talking about the inaugural public auction of heavyweights like the Mercedes AMG One and the Hyperion XP 1 prototype. But that's just the tip of the iceberg. Imagine getting your hands on a LaFerrari prototype, one of only three in existence, or cruising in the ultra-rare Lamborghini Veneno Roadster and Coupe, with only a handful made worldwide. And for those with a taste for the nautical, there's Tyde's pioneering hydrofoiling electric glass yacht, courtesy of BMW's design team, not to mention the no-reserve Tesla Cybertruck. (I can’t get away from them!!)

Let's not overlook the legends of the track – a fleet of genuine John Player Special racing cars from the Lotus F1 team, a treasure trove of motorsport history including cars driven by icons like Nigel Mansell and Ronnie Peterson, alongside Colin Chapman's personal aircraft and team transporters from the golden era of F1 racing.

The Big Picture:

With over 2 billion views a month, the eyeballs on these auctions will be unprecedented. This visibility isn't just about direct sales; it's about viral sharing potential, opening doors to an even wider audience of potential buyers.

SBX Cars isn't just playing the numbers game; their 5% commission structure undercuts traditional auction houses and brokers, offering significant savings to buyers & sellers. This approach, combined with the convenience of online viewing, positions them as a formidable player not against the online platforms, but against the live auction houses like RM Sotheby's, Broad Arrow and Gooding. Times could be changing…

The Future Ahead:

The industry should brace for impact. SBX Cars isn't just about selling a few high-profile vehicles; it's about reshaping the luxury car market. While not every vehicle may sell at launch, the platform's potential to move multimillion-dollar cars online could revolutionize how these transactions are conducted.

The real question is how Supercar Blondie's vast online community will translate into actual sales. If she can turn even a fraction of those followers into buyers, we could be witnessing the dawn of a new era in car auctions.