Over the course of the past 20 years, Mitch Silver’s trio of annual collector car auctions on the Fort McDowell reservation in Arizona have provided both vintage vehicles for sale and a respite from the sales extravaganzas taking place not far to the west in Scottsdale and Phoenix. Those auctions will continue, but with new ownership.
Silver has announced the sale of Silver Auctions Arizona to Emmett Rice, who established one of the nation’s first publicly traded new car dealership groups, which in 1996 sold to an even larger operation, Autonation. Eager to get back into the game, in 2007 Rice opened Vintage Autohaus & Imports, a classic car dealership in Amarillo, Texas, where he also has staged several collector car auctions.
Emmett and Nancy Rice also have a home in the Phoenix area, but the Arizona operation will be spearheaded by Andy Stone, formerly of Leake Auctions; Jason Rose, formerly of Barrett-Jackson; Rob Brunton, who has worked at Penske Automotive and at Leake; and Rodney Stokes, director of operations at Vintage Autohaus & Imports.
Silver will continue to stage collector car auctions in the northwestern states — he lives in Spokane, Washington — and also plans to expand his schedule of estate sales. He and his office manager, Kim Betzer, will work with the new team as the transaction takes place over the next year or two.
“Emmett and Andy will keep what I have built and improve on that foundation with knowledge, energy and resources to provide our customers with exactly what they want — a successful auction for buyers and sellers in Arizona three times a year,” Silver said in a statement.
“I plan to keep the same style of auctions that Silver has fostered over the years with integrity, honesty and a comfortable auction setting where everyone is welcome,” Rice added.
The new team will stage its first Arizona sale November 24-26, Thanksgiving weekend. It also plans an expanded, 500-car sale January 18-20 during Arizona Auction Week 2018. The dates for the spring sale are March 16-18, 2018, Stone said.
“We are ready to hit the ground running for our Thanksgiving weekend auction in November while also planning for a 500-car event in the January Auction Week in Arizona,” Rice said. “We couldn’t be more enthused about this collaborative auction effort.”