The hybrid sector is now a two horse race as consolidation continues to sweep through the sector, the chairman of Yopa has claimed.
Grenville Turner tells The Negotiator that the Coronavirus crisis has accelerated many things for his agency and that, together with its purple rival, they collectively list more properties than all the other hybrids put together.
“We listed more properties in May during the crisis than we did in May 2019,” he says. “We’ve streamlined costs and refined our marketing which has lowered our cost of acquisition, and with 150 agents we now have more listings and therefore increasing market share.”
Turner, who before joining Yopa held senior positions at both Rightmove and Countrywide, says Yopa is continuing to be a major player in the overall property market too.
“We’re ahead of great businesses like Connells, Savills, Dexters and Winkworths after only four years. It shows the attractiveness of the model,” he says.
“Our growth is ahead of where I thought it would be by now and I’m pretty pleased with that.”
The investors who back Yopa including the Daily Mail and Savills will be heaving a sign of relief. The agency may be young by industry standards, but it’s already seen a parting of ways with its founders and burned through both a CEO and some £91 million of investors’ cash.
Turner arrived nine months ago to bring his belt-and-braces agency experience but also his digital background and, although Yopa is still not profitable, he says the company is now ahead of its forecasts to become cash generative.
“Whichever companies I work for I try and look at the challenges that the business has and the opportunities and recruit a team that is able in a blended way to provide all of the expertise that is needed, but not be bound by doing things the same old way,” he says.
“That’s why I brought people into Countrywide from Dell and Rightmove and the banking world as well as huge industry track record from people like Bob Scarff.
“I do think the property market is one where you need understanding and expertise but equally if you want to do it differently, you also need to bring in people with new skills that can challenge the norms.”