Purplebricks has told the Press Association it wants to secure over 10 per cent of the agency market share in the UK, and will next year launch ‘Purplebricks Plus’ - a new service for customers.
In an interview with PA, reported in some regional newspapers this morning, Purplebricks CEO Michael Bruce says the new Purplebricks Plus will be an online platform allowing sellers to see all their domestic suppliers on one dashboard.
No further details are given, except that it will launch by next April.
He says Purplebricks Plus will allow him to keep the company's brand in customers’ minds, even though most people use estate agencies to move house only every seven or eight years. “My vision has always been to have a long lifetime relationship with our customers” he tells PA.
Bruce also says he believes the market in the UK is ripe for his firm to expand its share to around 10 per cent; he also disputes the accuracy of some claims about his agency's conversion rate of listings into completions.
With regard to further overseas expansion, he says the ideal would be to follow the model of his company’s recent acquisition of the Canadian firm, DuProprio/ComFree.
The PA story says the agency has Germany in particular and Europe in general in mind for expansion after receiving £125m investment earlier this year from the German publishing giant Axel Springer - that operation now owns some 11.5 per cent of the hybrid agency.
Michael Bruce says acquisitions - rather than start-ups from scratch - would be the model he would prefer when moving into new territories.
“We’d be more interested at this stage in an acquisition than putting some troops on the ground” he told PA.
“We’re not directly touting, but it’s clear that people know us and the brand and what we’re trying to achieve.”
“We know who’s doing OK in these markets and we’re observing them” he says.
Earlier this month Purplebricks announced that it had snapped up DuProprio/ComFree, which carried some 39,000 property listings in 2017. Purplebricks described it as having “a profitable 20.2 per cent market share of the real estate market in the province of Québec, and has more recently launched into new territories, securing a 2.0 per cent market share in Ontario and 2.3 per cent in Western Canada (Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta).”