London, UK – January 20th, 2015: Leading estate agency disruptor Emoov.co.uk has received a significant boost, securing a £1.5m financing round led by London venture capital firm Episode 1.
Challenging the traditional high street estate agency model, Emoov combines a team of experienced sales negotiators with an alternative outlet for selling properties that includes access to all the major property listing websites. Fees start at just £495, representing a saving of over £3,500 for the average UK property vendor.
Founder and CEO Russell Quirk (pictured above left) recognised the growing role of property portals and sold his family estate agency business to set up Emoov in 2010. “It was clear to me that property portals would become destinations for property buyers. Today sellers no longer see value in retail spaces. They also know how much their property is worth thanks to the wealth of information that’s now readily available. It’s also not uncommon for them to find a buyer within a matter of days. Technology has fundamentally changed this industry and consumers simply aren’t getting the service they pay for from traditional high street agents. That said, we still believe there is space in the market for good estate agents that can attribute real value to the services they offer.”
Emoov has experienced strong growth this year and, with a customer satisfaction rate of 98%, it won the award for ‘Best Online Estate Agent Customer Service’ from allAgents – the UK’s largest customer review website for the residential property industry. The online estate agency has now sold over 3,500 properties saving home sellers an estimated £11.5m in estate agency fees. The company will be using the new round of financing to further enhance its customer experience.
“We’ve taken the lead position in the online estate agents market – which has doubled its market share every year since 2010,” comments Russell Quirk, CEO. “This capital injection will fund the completion of our new customer platform as well as enable us to expand our marketing efforts.”
The funding comes amid growing interest in property tech companies among venture capital investors. Experts predict that the residential property industry – which is worth over £5 trillion in the UK alone – is about to undergo significant disruption.
Episode 1’s managing partner Simon Murdoch (pictured above right), who was an early backer of numerous success stories including Betfair, LoveFilm and Zoopla, commented “We love to invest in innovative companies who are obsessed about providing a fantastic service for customers in large markets. In our view, Emoov is just such a company. The company has the team, product and customer-centric approach to win in this exciting sector and we’re really looking forward to being part of that journey.”
The investment comes 12 months after Emoov announced a deal with Spire Ventures, the Mayfair based private equity house. Emoov has since expanded its management team with the appointment of COO Taylor Wescoatt, a former eBay and Time Out product executive, and Head of Marketing Stephen Jury, who previously worked at Motors.co.uk and Ladbrokes.