Countrywide has issued its first trading update for 2018 revealing revenues that have dropped by over 10% year-on-year from £162 million to £145 million for the first three months of the year.
But the company has signalled some light at the end of the tunnel, including an improving pipeline of sales and lettings instructions and rising market share.
The problems caused by the company’s previously retail-orientated approach and the subsequent re-engineering of its structure and management are to blame for the reduction in revenues, the company’s statement suggests.
These have caused a “significantly lower entry pipeline in UK and London sales coming into 2018”, the company says.
Countrywide’s ‘back to basics’ approach announced last month is now being implemented at speed, including the reintroduction of experienced sales and lettings at area and regional director level in all area of its operations.
We are encouraged by the early progress that is being made in sales and settings.”
This includes, most recently, the return of SW Regional Director Keith Knight (pictured), who left in July 2016 after eight years within the company.
Countrywide says this is already improving its pipeline of sales but in particular its lettings listings market share, which is ahead of the previous three months.
“We are encouraged by the early progress that is being made in sales and settings,” the company says.
Countrywide’s attempts to restart the business have been spilling out in to the recruitment market.
Several adverts place for letting and sales branch managers by senior management highlight how the business is changing including one for Gascoigne Pees in SW London.
It says the successful applicant will be “working alongside the Regional Director in managing the translation of the business strategy into clear deliverable operational plans”.
The company will report on its half-year progress at the end of July.