CANTON -- For 70 years, KIKO has been offering a myriad of service to the community, everything from auctions, commercial real estate, classic car auctions, online auctions and more.
"We do a lot more than auctions, in fact, we like to say that we offer 'options' over just 'auctions,'" explained Richard Kiko, the company's CEO and a third-generation member of the business' Kiko family.
Richard isn't the only Kiko in the business, in fact, the group largely believes at least a portion of its long-term success stems from the fact a good portion of the company is related.
"It's cousin city around here!" joked Sarah McIntosh, the company's business development manager.
"We have roughly 125 people working here, and probably a good third of us are related," said Kiko, who mentioned the general guiding principals of the Kiko family have strongly influenced the path of the business.
With the celebration of the company's 70th anniversary, much of the group is looking back on the history of the business, which was started in 1945 by Russell T. Kiko. The company's notorious wagon logo stemmed from Russell's belief the company would be "pioneers" in the auction business. Although the company started small, it now includes 65 auctioneers and Realtors and conducts over 1,000 auctions every year.
"We really want people to understand that we do more than auctions," explained Kiko. "As we say, we turn assets into cash. If you're trying to sell your home, KIKO might be the way to go regardless of whether you have decided to auction your home. We might auction it, we might sell it, heck, we might try to buy it if it's the right price."
Kiko said the business runs on three basic guiding principles: trying to love and care for each other within the business, ensuring everything within the business is conducted in the spirit of true integrity and an openness and willingness to collaborate with others.
"In a lot of ways, I think that our willingness to collaborate with others has majorly contributed to our success," said Kiko. "We have many Realtors on hand, and every single one of them has their individualities that they bring to their work."
McIntosh mentioned the people who work for KIKO tend to lean toward complete honesty, even if that is sometimes hard for others to hear.
"They're honest with people about how much they can really expect to make from their assets," said McIntosh. "Maybe someone wants to sell their home for $500,000, and they may or may not actually be able to do that, but our Realtors and auctioneers are honest about what can actually be expected from a sale. A lot of times the sale meets or exceeds what they predicted."
Kiko stressed the company is hoping to use its 70th anniversary as a way to remind the public they're not just an auction outfit, and auctions apply to more situations than one might readily think.
"Auctions aren't just for the dead or the desperate," said Kiko.
"A lot of times, I look at someone's situation, and if they're in a spot where maybe their husband got a new job and they need to move now, an auction might be the best option for them," said McIntosh. "If time is of the essence, an auction can really help you sell your home now."
Reporter Emily Votaw can be reached at 330-287-1655 or firstname.lastname@example.org. She's on Twitter @EmVotaw.