Market analysts at Swiss bank UBS are warning that Purplebricks’ meteoric growth in the UK may be slowing.
The bank has cut its long term market share forecast for Purplebricks from 15 per cent to 12 per cent and reduced its target share price from 305p to 285p.
Critically, UBS has retained a ‘sell’ status on the agency’s shares.
In a note to investors the bank says: “Our latest UBS Evidence Lab property listings tracker up to March 5 2018 indicates that growth may be slowing for Purplebricks, with 'Subject to Contracts' market share remaining broadly constant at circa five per cent since September 2017.
“Given the importance of the Spring Market, we believe that this level of progress will be below management's expectations, and will raise questions around the potential market share Purplebricks is able to achieve.
“Along with Purplebricks growth slowing, we can now see sustained growth from one of the challenger brands, Yopa, which has increased its market share to circa 0.5 per cent of the market.
“Whilst this is still small relative to Purplebricks, Yopa's strong funding position to support further advertising campaigns means this brand represents a threat. In addition, the growing prevalence of the 'no sale no fee' proposition by other online agents may disrupt further market share growth for Purplebricks.”
Yopa has substantial backing from traditional agencies Savills and LSL Property Services.