History and Timeline of Copart

Willis Johnson and Jay Adair

Copart was founded in 1982  by Willis J. Johnson, a true American success story. Johnson grew up learning about business from his father – an entrepreneur who dabbled in everything from dairy farming to running restaurants and building houses. Johnson took that entrepreneurial spirit, along with a strong work ethic and a passion for change, and started Copart with just one salvage yard in California.

In 1994, he took Copart public (NASDAQ: "CPRT"), raising the money needed to expand the company across the United States. Our evolving auction technology has transformed Copart from a salvage vehicle auction company into a technology company offering a global remarketing platform that links buyers and sellers around the world.

Today, Copart is the premier destination for quality vehicles. Our technology makes it easy to find, bid and win the vehicles our Members are looking for. Members can choose from classics, early and late model cars and trucks, industrial vehicles and more. We sell over one million vehicles each year, and have thousands up for auction every day.

Copart's success has earned us a place on the Forbes America's Best Small Companies list nine years in a row. Copart was also featured on the television show World's Best as "The World's Best Remarketing Company."

Junk to Gold: The Building of Copart

Find out even more about the history of Copart from founder Willis Johnson's book, Junk to Gold. Available through Amazon.com, Junk to Gold is the inspiring narrative of Willis Johnson's journey from one auction location in Vallejo, California, to global, multi-billion dollar business.

Watch the video about Junk to Gold below:

Learn More about the Book Here

Copart Timeline