Next month Simon Cox (pictured) is officially launching his land transaction agency Walter Cooper with a touch of razzmatazz in central London at which he will promise to ‘shake up’ the sector.
Cox came up through the ranks of Hertfordshire firm Lanes Land and New Homes after a spell working for the company’s estate agency division.
But Lanes was bought by Countrywide in 2016 and made part of the Hamptons estate agency business including, in July this year, losing its name and brand to the larger parent.
Cox says that during the Covid market closure last year he had a rare chance to sit down and think, including how land transactions could be approached differently.
And so, Walter Cooper was born a year ago headed up by Cox, Ollie Dyson former Land Director at Redrow Homes and Nigel Palmer formerly of Lambert Smith Hampton.
“I think in a positive way Brexit and Covid has cleared the rainforest canopy a little bit so there is an opportunity now – a lot of the older land agents who did well during the 80s, 90s and 00s decided to wrap things up during the pandemic, which was often the final straw,” he says.
“What we want to offer is an uncomplicated and uncompromised land transaction service to our clients, something that I think has been lost in the corporate land world where there is too much cross-selling.
“We want to strip everything back and get back to the basics of doing our jobs well and let our passion shine though – which is another thing that some big corporates lack too.
“The aim is to establish long-lasting relationships by doing what we do well without trying to complicate everything by offering a range of different services.”
Walter Cooper’s geographical ambition is to cover the key London commuter belt areas of the Home Counties and have five or six offices covering Hertfordshire, Kent, Essex, Hampshire, Surrey and parts of Berkshire and Bedfordshire. The company has an office in Hertford and six employees.
“We want to stay fiercely independent and want to be the go-to name for residential development land offering flare and pragmatism to a generally non-institutional customer base.”