Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Charity Auction Results

As you may have read, me and Ash from ChinaCarTimes, have been running an Auction of Automotive memorabilia in aid of those that suffered during the recent Sichuan Earthquake disaster. http://www.chinacartimes.com/2008/06/17/cct-charity-auction-goes-live/

The auction went live last Tuesday (17th June), and as my first official attempt at raising money for charity the nerves with slightly stretched.
I had enrolled the help of APR (http://www.automotivepr.co.uk/) to help with spreading the word, and within one hour of the auction going live they told me that the SMMT (Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders) had run the press release – I expected great things!

After 6 hours, posts on my BLOG, Ash’s website and the SMMT – the total amount raised was somewhere in the region of £0.24p a disaster beckoned; I quickly contacted Keith Adams at http://www.aronline.co.uk/ (grand daddy of everything MG and Rover), Steve Childs at http://www.mg-rover.org/ (Keith’s wayward offspring) and of course those nice people at Macdroitwich (a pro British Car forum) . All in an attempt to gather some interest and hopefully some more money!

Watching eBay had become a drug – I had my ‘selling’ page added to the favourites on my iPhone, by Blackberry, laptop and PC – I would feel naked if I hadn’t checked the bidding for longer than 30 seconds.

The first few days were painful; I set up several anonymous eBay accounts and resolved myself to bidding if the money didn’t start to role in.

To make myself feel better about the whole thing I would open eBay up in various languages to see how much had been raised in Chinese RMB, US$ and even in Rupee – however ‘not a lot of money’ is ‘not a lot of money’ in any currency.

Why was I worried? Well the whole event had been well reported, both in the UK and in China, I had leant on several high ranking people at Lotus, MG and LTI in order for them to agree to offer some great prizes, and of course the main reason for the auction was to raise money for the relief effort in Sichuan. Had we only encouraged people to donate £3.46 it would be embarrassing for me, the automotive companies, and of course have little impact on those who needed the money.

I needn’t have worried, as the weekend passed we were looking far more respectful and the money had started to trickle in, a competition between MG and Lotus enthusiasts seemed to have encouraged several well healed people to start bidding for badge pride, by Tuesday late afternoon (In China) I happily refreshed my eBay web page and watched the closing moments of the Auction.

With MG consistently in the lead all the way down to the last couple of hours when the Lotus tour took a surprising late comeback, however nothing could hold back the MG fans who proudly took first place for the most money pledged.

The Results

In total we raised £953.50 (or 12,891 RMB, $1875.97 or even 80,633 INR).

Not life changing by any means – but still a respectful amount.

My thanks go to the generous winners:

MG Tour Winner - £360

Mr G. McGeachy from County Kildare

Lotus Tour Winner - £257.50

Mr N. Lohf from Warwick

CCT Advert - £155

P. Vanden from London

LTI Tour - £131

Mr B. West from Middlesex

Lifan Car Models - £50

Mr M. Schug from Bexbach Germany

To all of those who placed bids, and of course to the generosity of:

Richard Ji – Nanjing MG UK

Ben Boycott – Lotus China

Mathew Cheyne – LTI Coventry

Ash Sutcliffe – CCT China

Lifan Automotive – China

Martin Hayes – APR London

Such has been the success of the project; we are considering holding another auction later this year. Over the years I and Ash have collected various items of automotive memorabilia (Signed books by Li ShuFu Geely founder, Registration plates off the first MG built at Nanjing, Limited edition NAC MG models, Limited edition Shanghai Maple and Geely models, etc. etc.) – Let us know what you think and we will plan something over the next few weeks.


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By absolument MG TO!

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Paul Stowe said...

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