Kenny Bruce, one of the founders of sector-leading online agency Purplebricks, has sent his good wishes to Russell Quirk, who founded Emoov.
A lengthy and highly respectful post on LinkedIn by Bruce expresses admiration for what Quirk tried to achieve with Emoov, which went into administration at the end of last year and which was sold last week.
Kenny Bruce’s brother Michael made an offer to Emoov’s stranded customers at the time of the agency’s collapse that Purplebricks would take them on free of charge.
Some customers took advantage of this, although the sales book was purchased by auctioneer and agency Pattinsons.
On LinkedIn, Kenny Bruce says:
“Russell it is clear that you took the responsibility of employing people and shareholders investment seriously and fought long and hard to bring about change.
“The life of an entrepreneur is never straight forward when aspiring to fulfil your dreams of creating an environment where your people and company can flourish whilst managing risk.
“It takes very broad shoulders and it is clear Russell you carried that responsibility and fought hard to bring about the change that is required. Keep fighting.
“Best wishes for the future and it’s clear the property industry needs people like yourself.
Meanwhile Quirk has apologised to staff, customers, creditors and shareholders in his firm for what he calls the “complex disaster” of its collapse.
In the latest of a series of new videos about the collapse of Emoov late last year, hosted by well-known property consultant Chris Watkins, Quirk says he didn’t “Do a David Cameron” and simply say the minimum to his people and walk away.
“I stood up in front of the staff for four or five weeks to tell them what was happening, how we were trying to sell the business, how many [buyers] were lined up” he tells Watkins.
Clearly emotional about the collapse, Quirk adds how humbling it was that despite having to tell staff that they might not get paid, most of them “still came in the next day, and the next day, and the next day.”
In terms of his own losses, Quirk - who has already stated that he didn’t draw a salary for around the first two years of Emoov’s existence - says he chose not to resign ahead of the collapse but instead effectively ‘go down with the ship.’
“I lost salary, lost notice, lost redundancy…but what I’ve lost predominantly is what I set out to achieve - an exit [strategy] for my family.”
The videos appear to be shining a candid and bright light on the collapse of a company as the online sector comes under pressure within the context of a tightening housing market.
You can see the latest instalment of the interview below: