Rightmove PLC – Acquisition of HomeViews Platform Limited
Press Release – ‘Rightmove plc, the UK’s largest property portal, today announces the acquisition of HomeViews Platform Limited (“HomeViews”) for a cash consideration of £8 million. HomeViews is the UK’s biggest community of verified resident reviews of property developments, with a particular focus on the build to rent sector.
It helps prospective residents make more informed decisions about where to live, as well as providing rental operators and developers with a powerful research and marketing tool to help them better understand their residents’ experiences. Its data platform, HomeViews Pro, is also used by the build to rent industry to better understand resident experiences and trends across the sector. HomeViews CEO, Rory Cramer, will continue to lead the HomeViews team following the acquisition.
Rightmove’s CEO Johan Svanstrom said: “The HomeViews team has built an impressive platform that gives consumers additional useful information to make decisions. It also provides valuable feedback for industry operators, especially in the build to rent sector, which is an exciting and fast-growing segment of the UK property market.
This acquisition provides Rightmove with yet another opportunity to further enrich our market-leading property information set for UK consumers and to create new and effective relationship tools for our build to rent operator partners. We’re very excited to have Rory and the entire HomeViews team onboard.”
HomeViews CEO Rory Cramer said: “Joining Rightmove gives us a brilliant opportunity to expand our services for our partners and other stakeholders. Rightmove’s brand leadership, its ongoing digital and product innovation, and the breadth and depth of its reach across the UK property market make this a fantastic combination. We can’t wait to start working together to leverage those benefits for the rapidly expanding build to rent market.”
Comment from Andrew Stanton, CEO Proptech-PR ‘The above official announcement is important for many stakeholders in the property industry and the proptech verticals. CoStar Group acquiring On The Market, already have a sizeable arsenal of technology to cascade down, in contrast possibly the incumbent heavyweight property portal Rightmove was mis-stepped by just repeating its old busines model of increasing licence fees without adding value.
Is this the starting pistol for all the main three portals to really digitize the moving process in the UK, I for one really hope so having been beating that drum for seven-years, as technology is definitely now outpacing legacy systems of property operations.
For HomeViews its value to the portal is of course users and technology and what potentially a hugely branded digital advertiser can do to the service, what is for sure by the time we get to the end of 2024, the portal space and what portals do is never going to be the same.’
Sharing Success – The Guild Annual Conference 2024
This spring, The Guild of Property Professionals will be holding its Annual Conference and Awards Ceremony on 22 March 2024 at the QEII Centre in Westminster, London. Titled ‘Sharing Success’, the full-day conference brings innovative and passionate Members together with industry pioneers for an event that is totally unique to The Guild’s exclusive network.
Iain McKenzie, CEO of The Guild of Property Professionals, says that this year’s Annual Conference will be focusing on championing industry successes both inside and outside the network. “The conference will provide Members with the opportunity to network and hear from some industry legends across sales and lettings. All topics and speakers will be industry related, with a focus on providing Members with insight and inspiration for the year ahead. We want to our Members to be able to gain something from the conference that they can practically apply to their businesses and that will help them navigate the ever-changing property market,” he adds.
According to McKenzie, one of the key speakers will be well-known industry figure, Peter Rollings, who headed up Foxtons and who owned Marsh & Parsons. The former Foxtons boss will be discussing getting higher fees, something he is well-versed with considering Foxtons’s average fee of around 2.48%. Rollings will also be discussing getting over challenges and blockers.
“Given the impressive average fee that Foxtons achieves, it is clear the brand understands how to articulate value. There is much that can be learned from the ethos and delivery that has helped the brand get to where it is today. By reducing your fee from 2% to 1.5%, you will have to sell 33% more properties just to stand still in a market with less stock, something particularly pertinent in the current market. Rollings will provide agents with some practical advice they can use within their business to achieve the fee they deserve,” McKenzie comments.
Looking at the lettings side of the business, CEO and Founder of Agent Rainmaker, Sally Lawson will be delivering a talk on additional revenue streams. “With over 30 years of experience and one of the top lettings trainers in the UK, who better to provide ways that agents can use to add to their bottom line. Lawson has poured herself into learning as much as she could about the sector, legislation and successful tried and tested practises used by the top lettings agents around the world. It is this knowledge, coupled with her experience that has led to her business’ success and her becoming a market-leading lettings trainer,” says McKenzie.
He adds that knowledge is opportunity for agents. “We wanted to have speakers that can impart knowledge that will help our Members to grow and thrive, even in a challenging market. If you have knowledge and can deal with complex issues, you have the ability to charge more, do more and serve more, providing huge value to your customers,” says McKenzie.
There will be several other speakers throughout the day, including Paul Offley, who heads up all things compliance related within The Guild. “Much has happened over the past 12 months with regard to the external economic influences on the sector, as well as legislative changes that agents need to adhere to within their business. We are fortunate to have experts at the conference who can provide some insight into these elements,” McKenzie comments.
The conference is not only about gaining insight, but also a great opportunity to both reflect and recognise the amazing accomplishments that many of the Members have achieved during 2023. “Despite a tougher market, many Members have achieved some incredible results over the past 12 months, so being able to acknowledge that as a network is always special,” he adds. “We will be presenting the Guild Awards during the afternoon. This gives us an opportunity to recognise and honour agents who have gone above and beyond for their clients and the industry in 2023. We are looking forward to celebrating together,” McKenzie concludes.
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.