ADESA Reno serves customers in Utah, Idaho, Nevada, Colorado, California, Washington, Oregon, Montana and Canada. It is one of eight auctions that KAR Auction Services, the parent company of ADESA, acquired from the Brasher family in 2016.

The auction runs four lanes in a 15,000-square-foot auction arena. The facility has a 3,600-square-foot reconditioning and detail shop and an 8,320-square-foot mechanic shop. The site’s 50 acres include 20 acres dedicated to storage and parking for 1,000 sale units.

We had a chance to chat with General Manager Scott Crane to learn more about this facility.

Tell us about the founding of this auction and its early history.

ADESA Reno was first established in 1990 as Petersen’s Auto Auction. Owners R.J. and Debbie Colovich sold the business to Brasher’s in late 2000. Jay and Larry Brasher jointly owned and operated it as Brasher’s Reno Auto Auction.

Jeff Brasher, the son of Jay and the nephew of Larry, ran the auction as the on-site principal. In 2001, the auction relocated from its original location on Kietzke Lane, near Gentry Way, to its current site on Echo Avenue. The new building was built specifically for the auction.

How is ADESA Reno influenced by the community that is the city of Reno?

We’re the largest wholesale auction in the area. The community is unique in that we have a finite geographic area. There are natural barriers between us and other cities, other markets. We have the Sierra Nevada mountains between us and Sacramento, and 500 miles of desert between us and Salt Lake, and between us and Las Vegas.

We’re a small community, and we have relationships with every dealership in town. We may not do business with all of them, but we’re consistently in contact with most, if not all, of them. We’re well known by all of our customers.

Our business has grown as our community has grown. Tesla just came in with their Gigafactory and Amazon built a big facility here a couple of years ago. We’re anticipating our business will grow as well in the coming years.

What is the competitive marketplace for ADESA Reno?

We like to say our competitors are just over the hill—in the larger market of Sacramento. Dealers tell us that they appreciate the personal service and recognition we’re able to give them, and we try to make that our competitive difference, since we are a smaller market. LiveBlock makes us a larger market, though—we’ve seen our business grow as the use of LiveBlock has increased.

What is unique about ADESA Reno and the team there?

What’s unique about our team—and you’ll find this at the other former Brasher’s locations—is the longevity of our employees. We don’t have a lot of turnover in key positions.

We also have two or three members of our office staff who started out as drivers. We saw that they had talent, we trained them, and they’ve become great assets to the auction. The opportunity exists here for people to advance and grow and to make a career out of working at our auction.

What do you see as the most significant trend in the auto remarketing industry right now, and how has it impacted the way you do business at ADESA Reno?

The most significant trends are the ever-increasing opportunities for cars to bypass brick-and-mortar auctions entirely. With upstream sales, mobile apps and online auctions, there are many avenues for vehicles to completely sidestep the local auction house.

We strive to make our auctions a place for us to meet our customers face to face, to shake hands, to make the auction a place where more business happens than just buying cars. We want to facilitate that as much as we can.

How did you get your start in the auto auction industry and what path has your career taken?

I began my professional life as a firefighter and worked for a couple municipalities. In 1994 I decided to take advantage of an opportunity to own and operate a retail grocery store. We owned and operated stores in Butte, Montana; Santa Anna, California; Pocatello, Idaho; and Sparks, Nevada.

I left the retail world in November of 2006 and started with the auction in February 2007 as sales manager. In July 2009, I stepped into the role as GM. I still find the auction environment fun and exciting, and I love sale day.