OnTheMarket has applied to the London Stock Exchange for the release of shares to agents signing long term deals with the portal.
No details have been revealed as to the identities or numbers of agents involved but the implication in the move is that they have signed as paying customers of the portal.
The shares are worth around £210,000 at OTM’s current share price, which has been sliding in recent weeks. The company is now valued at around £61m according to the share issue value.
For around a year OTM has been signing up agents on discounted or free deals, with recent trading statements saying a key objective was to turn these into customers paying at market rates.
In recent months the portal has stepped up its criticism of Rightmove in particular.
Ian Springett, OTM’s chief executive, last week said it was nearing “a crunch point” for agents considering their portal costs; he pointed to Rightmove’s latest trading statement which revealed its Average Revenue per Advertiser - the amount agents pay - had gone through the £1,000 per month average for the first time.
OTM’s application for the new shares came in the form of a statement to the City and shareholders:
OnTheMarket plc, the agent-backed company which operates the OnTheMarket.com property portal, today announces that an application has been made to the London Stock Exchange for admission of securities in respect of 220,319 ordinary shares of 0.2 pence each ("New Ordinary Shares").
These New Ordinary Shares have been issued to certain new agents in return for signing new long-term listing agreements in accordance with the strategy set out in the admission document published on 26 January 2018. It is expected that admission will become effective on 4 April 2019.
Following admission, the total number of ordinary shares and voting rights in the Company will be 62,037,247. The Company does not hold any shares in treasury.
The above figure may be used by shareholders in the Company as the denominator for the calculations by which they will determine if they are required to notify their interest in, or a change to their interest in, the share capital of the Company under the FCA's Disclosure and Transparency Rules.