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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Latest Countrywide "shambles" sends share price tumbling

Countrywide’s share price fell by as much as 17 per cent at one point yesterday afternoon as investors assessed the latest pratfall by the company - the collapse of its bid to sell its commercial arm.

As we reported yesterday there was an announcement from Countrywide a few minutes before the Budget, prompting industry cynics to say that this was a classic example of attempting to bury bad news.

The announcement effectively admitted that its bid to sell Lambert Smith Hampton to Monaco-based John Bengt Moeller for £38m was dead in the water, with new buyers being sought.

The revelation was described on Twitter as a "shambles" by respected property commentator Peter Bill, the former editor of Estate Gazette. 

In a brief trading update released at the same time Countrywide reported a £17m drop in revenues last year and revealed the tenant fees ban had cost it £12m.

Within a few minutes of the announcement the Countrywide share price plummeted from 265p to 220p; it recovered slightly during the afternoon to close at 232.4p, down well over nine per cent.

You can see the announcement in detail in our Newsflash story from yesterday, here.

  • Andrew Stanton CEO Proptech-PR    Proptech Real Estate Influencer

    The financially wounded dinosaur - is now in the operating theatre - what a terrible unravelling of this once fine company. Let us or rather the C-suite of Countrywide face some facts - they do not know what they are doing. Who announces a sell off an asset before the deal is done - only people who do not have the intelligence to realise the devastation of such a deal going awry.

    The banks might have been snapping at the them, after all 10,000 salaries a month to service is on its own a tall order, let alone the funding of the day to day loss making business, but if you run a big company you should not be making school boy errors.

    Talking of errors - Alison Platt - ensuring the share price dropped by 80% during her tenure, the 10M of letting deposits in the 'wrong account' AML breaches and fines - just who is running the show? Very soon if there is a God someone who takes their responsibilities seriously to safeguard the futures of all those working within the company and the shareholders.

    In 11 days - Countrywide's fate is sealed one way or the other - my thoughts LSL hostile bid will not go the distance - leaving a bloody rout - asset stripping and carnage. All of which many in the industry have been talking about for the last 18 months, so why did the board not act sooner.

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