May 3, 2011 / 12:47 PM / in 7 years

UPDATE 1-Ritchie Bros Q1 profit soars on strong auction proceeds

* Q1 EPS $0.16 vs $0.12 yr ago

* Q1 adj EPS $0.13

* Q1 auction rev $88.5 mln (Follows alerts)

May 3 (Reuters) - Industrial auctioneer Ritchie Bros Auctioneers Inc reported a 30 percent rise in quarterly profit, helped by an uptick in gross auction proceeds, and said it expects to launch services like insurance and customer finance around July.

Net income rose to $16.6 million, or 16 cents a share, from $12.7 million, or 12 cents a share, last year.

On an adjusted basis, it earned $13.6 million, or 13 cents a share.

The Vancouver, British Columbia-based company, which began as a small family-run business, said auction revenue rose 6 percent to $88.5 million.

Analysts on average had expected the company to earn 12 cents a share, on revenue of $90.8 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Gross auction proceeds rose 10 percent to $851 million in the quarter.

Ritchie Bros conducts auctions in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East for used and unused equipment for the construction, transportation, agricultural and mining industries.

Shares of the company, which have gained more than a fourth of their value so far this year, closed at C$29.12 on Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar in Bangalore; Editing by Don Sebastian)

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