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Strike names ex-Foxtons chief in senior role, as new TV ad debuts

Strike - which over the weekend announced a new £11m investment package - has now revealed it has a new chief technology officer.

It’s Dan Rafferty, who is made a member of the agency’s leadership team. 

He has some 20 years experience in the property industry, including time at Hunters as chief operating officer and four years at Foxtons as chief information officer. 

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In both roles, Rafferty led and developed the operational functions and tech expansions of the agencies. 

“I am really looking forward to a new series of challenges and opportunities at Strike” he says

“The company has an ambitious growth plan in place and it isn’t afraid to disrupt the industry which is over-due some changes. Strike is a brand which understands that and puts homeowners first.”

Strike chief executive Sam Mitchell says: "We are really excited to welcome Dan to the executive team. His visionary mindset, combined with our digital-first approach, will lead our continued investment and innovation in tech and further solidify our commitment to making moving as easy as possible for homeowners.”

The £11m investment includes a media-for-equity deal from Channel 4 plus funding from Sir Peter Wood, founder of the technology-based insurance firm Direct Line and esure, and a founder investor in comparison insurance service GoCompare. 

Strike - the evolution of Housesimple following a rebrand last year - says it’s aiming to be the number one estate agency in the UK, with much of its recent success attributed to a business model involving no fees charged to vendors for listing their properties for sale.

Last week, Strike launched a brand-new TV, radio and digital marketing campaign - you can see it below. 

  • Chris Arnold

    Another blinkered agency that imagines brand awareness is enough. Its not.
    It's not about how many arrive, but about how many stay after the hustle.
    And without a meaningful message, they're default dead.

  • Algarve  Investor

    One of the less annoying property adverts - good music, short, to the point, keeps your attention.

    But not sure about the claims of selling a home for free? How does that work? Are there no costs involved at all? That is the impression given, at least.

  • Andrew Stanton CEO Proptech-PR    Proptech Real Estate Influencer

    Strike only completes on 3,214 properties a year, out of the 1.2M properties that complete annually. Strike has been around since 2007, formerly branded Housesimple, and in 14 years they have only 'helped' 45,000 people to move.

    So in 14-years, there have been 16.8M completed sales in the UK, Strike has had only 45,000 of that pie. Bearing in mind they offer a freemium model now; this is a business going nowhere.
    In comparison a traditional one branch agency completes on 140 sales a year, and they charge proper fees, so Strike would only need to have 27 traditional offices to be completing on 3,214 sales.

    A cold start branch, needs 165K of seed capital, in year two breaks even, paying all that seed capital back and in year three makes 80k profit, by year five making a 250k profit.
    27 branches, as cold starts in 2007, would be £4.45M of seed capital, 2009 all capital repaid, by 2013 investors would be making 27 x £250,000 gross profit, 6.75M. In the next 8 years even allowing for underperforming branches the cumulative gross profit, would be say £5M x 8, lets call it £40M plus.

    Instead, tens of millions have been poured in, another £11M being wasted, give me a call, and lets use that 11M to cold start 65 branches tomorrow, and all investors in 36-months would have their capital back and maybe some profit.

    There is a lot of snake oil and emperors’ clothes going on – with SaaS as the new Messiah, I know a thing or two about that as well, so maybe 30 branches and the rest of the cash into the new model of agency we are on the cusp of.

    Then again I may be wrong I was only an estate agent for 32-years worked fot the two largest corporates in the UK and myself, and dealt with 18,000 properties in that time.

    And on the proptech front I have met over 400 founders, discussed their services, had 67 proptech clients last year, seen one of my first clients exit at multi-millions, have two proptechs we are looking to sell £30M plus, and we advised 20 real estate corporations last year also.

    We do not just deal with the small UK residential market either, we have clients in China, Russia, America, Australia, Israel, and in various verticals, from commercial real estate, to geospatial, from blockchain to augmented reality. What I do know is if an 'onliner' wants to win - they need to address the client UX square on - and not deviate.

    What I see loads of is spending cash 'on advertising' only for the service itself to be - clunky, ill thought out, low on tech, low on people and very low on original ideas. If Strike wants to replace estate agents, maybe - start with asking the public what they want, and build it from there, rather than on the shoulders of a legacy model.

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