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Inside the mind of the AUSTROS 2024 champion

By Sebastian Holloman
22 May 2024 | 11 minute read
luke banitsiotis woodards blackburn reb dc8yis

The winner of this year’s Australasian Auctioneering Championships (AUSTROS) shares the eight-year journey of “highs and lows” that led up to his victory.

Luke Banitsiotis of Woodards Blackburn has taken first place at this year’s AUSTROS, held in Hobart.

With the Melbourne auctioneer’s runner up placement at the Real Estate Institute of Victoria’s (REIV) 2024 Senior Auctioneering Competition having paved the way for his 2024 AUSTROS achievement, Banitsiotis succeeded in rising above four other finalists to take home the crown.

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Looking back on his achievement, however, Banitsiotis was emphatic that his achievement was “no overnight success”.

Banitsiotis detailed how after trying his hand at auctioneering at the behest of a friend, he was able to jumpstart his career as an auctioneer through winning the title of 2014 REIV Novice Auctioneer of the Year.

From then on Banitsiotis subjected himself to weekly training, making sure to always increase the intensity whenever the auctioneering competition season rolled around.

In the lead up to the REIV’s 2024 Senior Auctioneering Competition, Banitsiotis already had his sights set on winning at AUSTROS 2024, and devised a regimen to prepare accordingly.

Notably, Banitsiotis drew upon his experiences as a previous AUSTROS finalist by adding new training elements that would allow him to improve upon his past shortcomings.

This involved a particular emphasis on learning to adapt to the various “scenarios and distractions” that can emerge within an auction, differentiating approaches depending on the market, and a “heavy focus on arithmetic”.

According to the auctioneering champion, the approach “really paid off'” through enabling him to overcome the competition’s pressure cooker environment and high stakes.

Commenting on the techniques that he feels are vital for a successful auction, Banitsiotis said an “auctioneer should be able to mirror the type of buyers in the crowd”, highlighting that “great energy, product knowledge and a vast vocabulary” contribute to this adaptability.

Reflecting more broadly on the attitudes that he felt secured his success, Banitsiotis stated that “the ability to go back to the well, take on feedback, grow and improve” was paramount in allowing him to achieve his victory.

“If you really want to achieve it, it’s possible, you just have to be willing to do the work,” Banitsiotis concluded.

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