Challenger portal OnTheMarket has landed a significant coup after revealing that leading national franchise chain Belvoir has signed up.
The 300-plus branches of the 23-year old estate agency brand have begun listing all their sales and lettings properties on the portal, while its CEO Dorian Gonsalves has launched unusually strong-worded side-swipe at incumbents Rightmove and Zoopla.
Belvoir’s franchisees now list their properties on all three portals but Gonsalves says his company believes Rightmove and Zoopla’s dominance of the portal market has “for some time” been ready for disruption.
“OnTheMarket is the first serious contender for several years to be injecting genuine competition in the interests of agents and property-searchers alike,” he says.
“It is agents who provide the portals with the majority of their content and income [and] it is also agents who serve their clients and property-searchers on the ground in selling, letting, buying and renting property.
“I’m very pleased to be announcing our strategic support for OnTheMarket as an agent-backed business and am confident that with agent momentum building it will continue to go from strength to strength.”
The decision by Belvoir follows hot on the heels of Eric Walker’s promotion to MD of the company having arrived at Belvoir as boss of Northwood, which Belvoir bought in June 2016.
Before Northwood was bought, Walker was one of the leading estate agents to question OTM’s ‘one other portal’ rule, saying that he was ‘uncertain’ whether the tactic was ‘actually working’. OTM ended the policy when the company went public on the AIM stock market earlier this year.