Will the Australian Pexa Group acquire UK AIM listed Smoove plc?
In a little over a week, it will be clear if the Pexa Group a behemoth proptech home moving business based in Australia, headed by CEO Glenn King, will swallow up its UK and much smaller in revenue size competitor Smoove Plc, run by CEO Jesper With-Fogstrup.
If the deal goes through, the younger company Pexa which has been around since 2018 and turned over £150M last year, will be looking to grow its empire in the UK. On the face of it, Smoove which has been around for nearly two decades and turned over £19M last year making a £5M loss, would seem a prime target.
But in the present retrograde residential housing market, and higher cost of capital, maybe the deal will not happen, if terms can not be hammered out that suit both parties. True the re-mortgage marketplace is a sweet spot for the conveyancing side of operations for both companies, but the Pexa/Smoove dance does seem to be a protracted one.
For those unfamiliar, with these two enterprises, according to Jamie Lennox, Editor, Today’s Conveyancer, “Smoove plc has been providing software solutions for nineteen years. Their services include onboarding / home moving software Smoove, conveyancing comparison platform eConveyancer, case management software DigitalMove, and compliance support from Legal Eye.”
“Pexa evolve(ed) from a government initiative in Australia more than 10 years ago, PEXA aims to bring financial institutions, lawyers, and conveyancers together through its platform to help home movers safely settle their homes. They are now bringing their technology, financial settlement model, and expertise to the United Kingdom, beginning with England and Wales.
Their technology aims to work alongside lenders, lawyers, and conveyancers in the United Kingdom, starting with remortgages (which launched in late 2022) and followed by their sale and purchase solution (launching 2024). Through this collaboration, they say their aim is “to support our customers in achieving greater operational resilience and efficiencies, and set the new standard for how Britons remortgage, buy, and sell houses”.
Given that Pexa is a big fish in a relatively small pond, the opportunity for growth in the UK marketplace is obvious but given the slowness of Smoove to become a superpower in the nebulous home buying and selling ecosystem in the UK, might send warning signals to any business who feels that an Australian property market aligns to the constraints and legacy systems of the UK market.
We will know by close on the 13th of July if a deal is to be done, perceived logic would say yes, but in the present marketplace, many operations are not being so strident as they were pre-SVB. What is clear is that underpinning the home moving process with digital if done correctly, not only works, but will to the winner brings large repeatable profits
comparemymove comparison website helps home movers’ cash in
PRESS RELEASE – We have all wondered if we could make some serious money from the stuff tucked away in an attic, basement, or the back of the cupboard, but could there be enough to actually help you move house?
As moving house is an expensive ordeal, finding something that could knock off a portion of this price is the dream, and especially with inherited houses, there are a few ways you can leverage the items in the house to help you with this.
Compare My Move has researched the most efficient ways you can make a little extra money when clearing out a house for your big move.
Self-valuation will usually get you the best value as you are not having to pay someone else to do it for you. Many online resources can help you in your self-valuation, the most effective being searches for the same or related items in online marketplaces such as eBay, Gumtree, or Facebook Marketplace. You can also value your items physically in pawn shops or with some known experts in a certain field.
There are some downsides to self-valuation. Although you could be getting a lot more money as you do not have to sell at trade price or pay someone to value your items, there is also a chance you would be getting less money by not having the items valued. They could be worth a lot more than you think, and this will be hard to decipher without a professional valuation.
Self-valuation can also take quite a long time to do, as you have to sort through your items and work out which are of any value. Whereas house clearance companies, auction houses and professionals will usually be able to spot a valuable item much quicker.
House clearance companies
Most house clearance companies will value items themselves and buy them from you at a trade price. They will then deduct the price of the items from the house clearance cost, which could actually leave you in profit if enough is found. Before finding out how much a house clearance will save you – you need to know how much it had cost.
To find out how much you can save during a house clearance you first need to know how much you would spend on a house clearance. The average price of a house clearance is between £325 and £595 but this is affected by a few factors, but the main change in price will depend on the volume of items you need to clear.
The next biggest effect on cost will be the actual items you are clearing from your house. Some items will always cost a little extra to move – here is a list of the main culprits of adding cost to your house clearance.
|TV + Monitors
|Small Fridge Freezer
|Large Fridge Freezer
|Slabs, Plasterboard, Bricks
All costs and cost estimates from Checkatrade.
The money you make on house clearance services from the valuables they are clearing will depend on the company you use. Some may donate the valuables they have been asked to clear to charities or recycle them – but you will get no money from this.
Some will take the valuables at trade value and give you the money for them, meaning that if you have enough valuable items your costs will be covered, and the house clearance company will then pay you any extra profits beyond the house clearance cost. It must be noted that the trade price of an item could be much less than if you were to sell it yourself or through an auction.
When comparing house clearance companies, it is important to check what they will do with the valuables they find, this way you know whether to extract your valuables beforehand or leave them to the professionals. If you know that the valuables in your house could go for £600 in trade price, hiring a house clearance company could save you the hassle of self-valuation, and still make a profit.
It is quite common for auction houses to also offer house clearance as the service can be a treasure trove of valuable and antique items. House clearances from auction houses work the same as any other house clearance company – except instead of buying any valuable items you have for a trade price; they are put up for auction. The amount the items are sold for at auction will then be deducted from the cost of the house clearance, and if it exceeds this cost, given back to you as profit.
The main benefit and drawback of using an auction house clearance instead of a regular house clearance company are the same, the fluctuation in price. With a house clearance company, you will usually be given the trade value for any valuable item you have, but with an auction house the price you get is the price it is bought for, this could be more than the trade value, but it could equally be less.
Auction houses that also offer house clearance services will be able to properly value any items that you have, and know where to start with the lowest bidding, so it is more likely that the item will sell for a trade price or above than it is for the item to sell for under.
Charitable House Clearance
Charitable house clearances are house clearances, done by not-for-profits that cost you nothing. In return, the charity gets to keep any valuable items to donate or sell. The biggest upside of using a charitable house clearance is that they will collect your items for free. However, there are a couple of downsides that come along with it.
The more obvious one is that you won’t get money for the items that could have a good amount of value, however, if you don’t think you have enough value in your items to make a profit or don’t mind your items being donated to charity, this isn’t too much of a concern.
The other downside is that most charitable house clearances will not fully clear your house and will simply take the items they could donate or sell for free. Acting as more of a free collection service than a house clearance service. This could be perfect if you need furniture or other items removed at no cost – but if it is a bigger job that requires the clearance of other non-valuable items then you may need to hire a separate house clearance company anyway.
David Sayce, Co-Founder of Compare My Move had this to say on saving money when moving house:
“We all look to save a little money when moving house, and finding unwanted valuables during a house clearance can put a little dent into your overall costs. From antique furniture to Pokémon cards, there is always something tucked away that could sell for quite a bit.
However, finding the best way to value and sell these items is crucial. Always talk to your house clearance company about valuables before your house clearance.”
Andrew Stanton is the founder and CEO of Proptech-PR, a consultancy for Founders of Proptechs looking to grow and exit, using his influence from decades of industry experience. Separately he is a consultant to some of the biggest names in global real estate, advising on sales and acquisitions, market positioning, and operations. He is also the founder and editor of Proptech-X Proptech & Property News, where his insights, connections and detailed analysis and commentary on proptech and real estate are second to none.