Savills has joined the internet set, leading a £16m round of funding into the recently launched online agency, YOPA.
It will be very interesting to see how the connection helps both Savills and YOPA, as more and more online start-ups challenge the established traditional agencies.
The largest of these is Purplebricks, which claims a 60pc share of the online market and is now the UK’s fourth largest estate agent.
“This investment broadens the group’s access to the UK residential sector by enabling us to take an interest in the high volume segment of the market, comprising over one million transactions annually, to which Savills has had little exposure to date,” said Jeremy Helsby (left), Group Chief Executive of Savills.
“We wanted to provide the same service as traditional estate agents while drastically cutting the cost to consumers,” said YOPA Chief Executive Daniel Attia (right). Homes can be sold for just £780, he claimed, and it takes less than 10 minutes to create a new listing.
Daniel Attia co-founded the business with Andrew and Alistair Barclay, the grandson and son of Sir David Barclay, who owns the Daily Telegraph with brother Sir Frederick. Neither of the newspaper’s owners have a direct stake in YOPA.
Savills posted record revenues last year, up 19pc to £1.28bn, while pre-tax profit jumped 16pc to £98.6m, though this growth came from commercial property.
Savills invested in YOPA through Grosvenor Hill Ventures, its investment arm. The size of its stake in the business has not been disclosed.
Mr Attia said, “We are immensely proud to have received investment from such a well established company. Their support, and that of our other investors, puts us in a great position to super-charge our growing market share.”