Connells Group’s estate agency business recorded an eight per cent increase in exchanges in 2016 over the previous year, and says it is still in the business for what it calls “selective acquisitions” in the coming 12 months.
Brexit and economic uncertainty meant some large operators, notably Countrywide, put a lid on acquisitions in the latter part of 2016 but Connells made several significant acquisitions over the course of the full year - most notably Rook Matthews Sayer, Porter Glenny and Paul Dubberley - and opened 14 new branches across its brands.
Combined, this brought a further 56 new branches into its network; Connells Group now has nearly 600 branches.
David Plumtree, estate agency chief executive at the group, says: "We are confident about the outlook for our business this year and buoyed by the strength in the market as evidenced by how many active buyers we are seeing [so far in 2017]. Indeed, we’re currently recording 11 buyer registrations for every new instruction that comes onto the market."
He adds: "Strengthening our branch network and extending our geographical footprint remains a key strategy for the future, as does our appetite for selective acquisition."