The long-awaited merger of Tepilo and Emoov is reported to have been confirmed this afternoon and in with them goes online lettings operator Urban, creating an online agency presence said to be second only to Purplebricks.
The move was first revealed in outline by Sky News earlier this month; it has now been confirmed that the merger comes with an ‘airtime for equity’ deal with Channel 4’s Commercial Growth Fund, which offers advertising airtime to businesses it supports.
The new merged business is said to be led by Emoov’s founder and chief executive Russell Quirk; no word has been said this afternoon on branding, although Sky believes the long-established separate Emoov and Tepilo names are likely to remain.
It is not known what held up the deal, which early this month was described as likely to be formalised "within days." Then on May 17 Quirk told EAT that there would be an announcement about a week later, possibly on May 22.
The size of the merged agency is believed to take it above that of Yopa, the agency currently backed by Savills and LSL Property Services, and regarded by many commentators as the 'best of the rest' online operation behind Purplebricks.
Back in September Sky News ran a story suggesting Emoov was approaching investment banks to discuss a potential stock market listing within four months; that came to nothing. Earlier this month Sky said a merged Emoov/Tepilo entity could also be considered for a stock market float - but nothing has been announced about this, at least as yet.