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COVID to cost OTM £2 million as it also reveals an extra 1,000 paying agents

The portal reveals increasing revenues and additional paying customers, but also reveals that its 33% discount offered during the crisis, will cost it dear.

Nigel Lewis

onthemarket

OnTheMarket.com has signed up an additional 1,000 paying agents compared to six months ago, it latest results show, but has revealed that its COVID discounts will cost it £2 million this year.

But OTM continues to lose money and the portal now says its revenues for 2020/21 will be down 21% to £23 million following its recent decision to cut fees to agents by 33% during the pandemic.

The portal currently has 9,000 paying agents and 12,497 branches listed in total, a 32% rise compared to a year ago, although when developers are added it now has 13,364 advertisers on its site.

During its financial year ended January 2020 these extra paying agents helped push up its revenues by 32% to £18.8 million.

But although it has managed to bank some cash and now holds £8.8 million at its bank, it still lost £9.2 million during its most recent financial year despite reducing its overheads by £1.5 million to £16m.

“Clive Beattie, CEO, says OTM has: “Increased our paying agent base, broadened our customer markets to include more new homes developers and achieved significant growth in visits and leads to agents.”

“Beattie, who is the interim CEO since the departure of Ian Springett following arguments about the portal’s digital direction, says he “looks forward with confidence and a differentiated proposition highly valued by agents looking for sustainably fair pricing.”

Its City adviser Zeus Capital says its revenues were growing strongly prior to the COVID crisis and that when the discount period ends – and assuming the economy revives – its revenues will exceed £32 million next year, its Investment Research Analyst Robin Savage predicts.

June 11, 2020

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