Strike, formerly known as Housesimple, is the latest online agency to claim it’s going to secure a 10 per cent market share.
The ambition was articulated by former Carphone Warehouse boss Andrew Harrison, in an interview in The Times over the weekend.
Strike’s sell-for-free service relies on customers buying ancillary services which earn Strike high referral fees.
Under its free guise it launched in Yorkshire and the North West in June 2019, followed by Nottingham and the North East in 2020. More recently it expanded into the central region and had announced plans to go national by early 2022.
Over Christmas it was announced Strike had gone nationwide, albeit only with 70 local agents operating on the ground across the country. The latest Times article suggests this figure may have risen to 80.
Harrison - an investor in Strike and its company chairman - says the agency’s ‘free’ proposition means “we didn’t have to spend tens and tens of millions on marketing”.
“Our number of valuations and listings has doubled in the last month. The last four weeks have been quite a whirlwind” Harrison tells The Times.
He claims Strike has overtaken high-profile brands such as Savills, Foxtons and Knight Frank in terms of share of listings - and he also claims Strike will break even by the middle of this year.
“We’ve got 16,000 Trustpilot reviews at an average of 4.7. We sell houses faster than anyone else and we sell houses for more than other people” he adds.
“We’re investing behind a brand that we think is going to be a big one. We’re prepared to make big bets.”
He believes that Strike can take 10 per cent of the overall market following an £11m cash raise last July and an £8m raid in December.
Harrison’s prediction is not the first from a high profile online agency.
Purplebricks’ chief executive Vic Garvey has in recent months repeatedly set the 10 per cent target as a public ambition; in 2018 online company Emoov put itself up for sale five months after a reported £100m merger with two rivals, having suggested a goal of a 10 per cent share.
In late January the businesses consultancy TwentyCi reported the market share of all major hybrid and online agents combined was just 6.7 per cent.
Colin Bradshaw, chief customer officer at TwentyCi, said: “Such a considerable underperformance in a buoyant market will clearly raise significant interest in the viability of the business model that has failed to gain traction with 93 per cent of sellers last year. “