Hybrid estate agency Purplebricks has revealed that two former Virgin brand and marketing experts who have been with the agency since its inception are joining its board, with one becoming director of marketing.
Will Whitehorn, former president of Virgin Galactic and brand development and corporate affairs director at Virgin has been appointed a non-executive director, with a place on the board.
James Kydd, former managing director of brand and marketing at Virgin Media is now the marketing director of Purplebricks.
Whitehorn, 54, worked at the Virgin Group for 24 years, where he became a special advisor to Sir Richard Branson. He was responsible for Virgin’s move into trains and led the PR campaign against British Airways.
Kydd, also 54, founded Virgin Mobile turning the initial £30m investment in Virgin Mobile into a £960m return in just six years. He also co-founded the V Festival, now one of the world’s most successful music festivals.
Kydd also helped with the launch of marketing campaigns for Eurostar and Virgin Money.
Both men joined Purplebricks.com over a year ago but the announcement on their new positions was made on the agency’s website this month.
Whitehorn - who is also chairman of the Scottish Exhibition Centre, non executive director of Stagecoach Group plc, chairman of Speed Communications and chairman of Transport Systems Catapult LTD, says he was drawn to Purplebricks by its “revolutionary approach” and focus on the customer.
Kydd says: “There is a yawning gap between the traditional estate agency model and the online estate agencies. Purplebricks is genuinely innovative in the way it fills that gap, by marrying expert service with a unique online platform. We know from research that consumers are eager for such a proposition but it doesn’t currently exist. From a marketing perspective, this represents a golden opportunity to fundamentally change the way an industry operates. That is hugely appealing”