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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Purplebricks' founders 'not seeking external funding' for new portal

Property portal Boomin has been "courted by a range of potential backers" according to Sky News.

The news service - which has amended an earlier story suggesting the portal was actively looking for investors - says Purplebricks founders Michael and Kenny Bruce, who are behind the Boomin project, have received "significant inbound interest" in funding the new company.

However, a spokesman for Boomin told Estate Agent Today over the weekend that to date the company has been self-funded and is not currently looking for external sources of investment.

The spokesman added that the company's emphasis now was on discussions with agents and preparing to launch later this year. 

Few details of the new portal have been released, save for a pledge that it will offer “an unparalleled depth and breadth of service, underpinned by cutting-edge technology".

Sky says Boomin has recruited a workforce of more than 100 people, including 60 technology specialists.

Recently the Say No To Rightmove campaign lavished praise on Boomin, having been shown an early version of the portal.

You can see the Sky story here.

 

  • icon

    Anybody willing to take a bet that a flotation is already being planned?

  • adrian black

    all about critical mass of subscribers, if they can get rightmove market share of subscribers then i'm sure they can build the tech for way way (and a way more !!) less than rightmove market cap and if agents advertise through their offices they can save on media spend too - going to be very interesting and what the likes of connells, countrywide and LSL do will be pivotal (maybe they have already committed to the investment ?)

    Mark Walmsley

    Who are subscribers? Rightmove are paid by agents. Are agents subscribers? Or are consumers subscribers (i.e the customers subscribing for “alerts” etc”. I’m just curious as to whether all these new portals are just d**k measuring or whether they are prioritising the actual end user (buyer).

     
  • Lenny White

    Wouldn't investors surely be ultra cautious of a Michael Bruce offering given PB's performance?! Once bitten...

  • adrian black

    early investors made a packet.....big ? is can the story stay strong through float, much easier to raise money second time around even if 1st peaked and troughed, the sound bite of the creation of £1bn company (at a point in time) is quite siren, or possibly fabulously enriching....time will tell

  • John Wathen

    If the Bruce brothers tell you the time, check your watch! The only reason Purple ‘Pricks’ has lasted this long is because of big money investment from dubious sources like Wonga. Michael & Kenny got the hell out of it with their big profits for good reason.
    Much as Rightmove deserve a good pasting this unlikely pair‘s track record does not auger well for a credible alternative.

  • Charlie Lamdin

    Every time dangerous but slick duo’s like this launch something, a few people make a lot of money, but thousands of people lose. Whether it’s Wonga, Purplebricks or pretending to care about the mental health of agents (“Let’s align ourselves with respected people who do actually care about agents, Chuck a tiny bit of money at the management but get everyone else to mentor/work for free, but not actually do anything ourselves, then we’ll look good and everyone will forget how we decimated agents’ income and reputation for 5 years.”) when will we learn?

  • John Wathen

    Agreed, these two are all about making a quick buck out of Estate Agency any which way they can.
    Michael Bruce is an accountant who did the books of a successful Midlands Estate Agent. His brother worked for an Estate Agency on the South Coast. They bought that multi-office Midlands Agency (rumour has it they never ever came up with all the money) & brought in other family members to join in the Jamboree. They were like kids in a sweet shop & treated it like a toy giving clients a choice of different lollipop coloured boards & renting a massive Head Office building where they tried to centralise Sales Progression & started their own Conveyancing Company BE Legal. In a quietening market it was destined to failure & once the creditors & staff failed to get paid the writing was on the wall. Connells picked up the pieces. It proved once again that Professional Estate Agency is a Cottage Industry and cannot be ‘industrialised’. The local expert who intimately knows his patch, keeps his nose clean & always puts the client first will inevitably prevail. The Bruces real talents seem to lie in raising large amounts of capital from opportunist sources for high flying schemes they dream up promising to reinvent the wheel. A new Property Portal & cunning plan to promote Estate Agent’s wellbeing are just their latest money making wheezes!

  • icon
    • 06 September 2020 15:03 PM

    This sickens me as they almost closed our business with PB. I have never contributed to these news items, I only read them but today felt compelled to say something.
    They are trying to lure us in with their mental health site and I can't believe the people who have supported this. It says a lot about them.

    Well said John Wathen and some of you others. I echo what you are saying and your concerns. They will be no different to rightmove. They will try to lure agents in with promises of caring and wanting the best and any other crap they can come up with. The problem is, many agents will probably fall for it. I think I speak for our entire branch in saying we won't be touching it however good it is and would rather invest our time and money in to some of the challengers we have been speaking to who seem to actually care. I know we can't guarantee they will never go the same way, but I would rather take that risk than go with these guys.

    Anyone that does fall for their bullsh%t and supports this is a total fool. This is a classic case of out of the frying pan into the fire. All I see here is greed, trying to capitalise further on our misery.
    Trust has to be earned, and they proved they could not be trusted. They don't deserve a second chance. Sorry this just smacks of deceit on so many levels.

  • Mark Walmsley

    Wow. That is passionate.

  • icon

    If rightmove had any brains, they'd not put their prices back up - Laker springs to mind.

  • John Wathen

    If the only good thing to come from the Bruces latest nonsense is that the fear of God is put up Rightmove then for the first time in their lives they will have done the industry a favour.

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