We have been consistently impressed by YOPA, whose technological edge, dedication to transparency and focus on the client at the heart of the sales process all resonate strongly with our core values and the way we do business..
News has broken today that Savills, one of the largest high street estate agency firms, has acquired a minority stake in hybrid estate agency YOPA after participating in a £16m fundraising round.
Although it is not yet clear as to the size of the acquisition, Savills now join Connells in the foray into digital disruption by the incumbency.
YOPA was founded in 2014 and has since developed its technology-led business model, which was launched in hybrid form in January 2016. It comprises digital technology to link the activities of sellers, buyers and YOPA’s own franchised local property agents, who are further supported by a dedicated customer service centre.
Jeremy Helsby, Group Chief Executive of Savills, said: “We have followed the rapid advance of the online ‘hybrid’ estate agency model over the last year. This investment broadens the Group’s access to the UK residential sector by enabling us to take an interest in the high volume segment of the market, comprising over 1 million transactions annually, to which Savills has had little exposure to date.
We have been consistently impressed by YOPA, whose technological edge, dedication to transparency and focus on the client at the heart of the sales process all resonate strongly with our core values and the way we do business.”
Russell Quirk, founder and CEO of eMoov.co.uk, commented: “Today’s news is great for the hybrid sector and particularly the larger players like eMoov.co.uk. The alternative, better value, better service proposition offered by the likes of eMoov and other hybrid players has been gaining traction and credibility at a significant rate.
When a long-standing incumbent like Savills wakes up to the realisation that they must invest in such a disruptive proposition in order to prevent themselves from becoming obsolete, despite it being the antithesis of all they stand for in terms of high fees, then you know that the inflection point is on the horizon. It also demonstrates that homeowners themselves support this new method of selling and the more consumer-friendly proposition it offers, although this is hardly surprising.
You only have to look at the scale of growth in the sector to see why Savills have sat up and taken notice. I predict that the hybrid sector will account for at least 20% of all estate agency transactions by 2020, an increase from 5% currently.
eMoov alone are now 130% bigger than this time last year and with a tech platform and a team that is leading the space. The future of the consumer property industry is set.”