Bruce brothers warned against ‘repeat of the PB bullying tactics’

The Bruce brothers have been accused of having previously used aggressive tactics to squash negative reviews about their former company, Purplebricks, and are now being urged not to do the same with their new venture, Boomin, which is set to launch over the next few weeks.

allAgents was previously involved in a long-running battle with Purplebricks after the online agent claimed the negative reviews published on the website were either fake or could not be substantiated.

In September 2017, allAgents suspended reviews of Purplebricks from its site after the online agency questioned the legitimacy of some of the negative reviews on their platform.

Purplebricks had sent legal letters to the review site over a number of disputed statements about the agency’s performance, claiming that the negative reviews published on the website were either fake or could not be substantiated.

allAgents subsequently tried to raise £50,000 in crowdfunding to pay for its legal costs, but fell short.

allAgents eventually reinstated the Purplebricks page together with certain reviews.

Purplebricks countered by saying it had never sought nor had any commercial agreement with allAgents “and we have no desire to work with them in the future as we have no confidence in the veracity, robustness and transparency of its service”.

The long-running feud between website allAgents and the Bruce brothers looks set to continue after a Boomin review profile page went live yesterday.

Boomin’s company profile is now live on the section that is dedicated to reviews of companies that provide services to the industry.

Martin McKenzie of allAgents said: “We are hoping that there is no repeat of the PB bullying tactics and that the management will allow us to host feedback of genuine Boomin customers without the fear of litigation.”

Reflecting on the days when the Bruce brothers were in charge of Purplebricks and threatened allAgents with legal action to remove all negative reviews, McKenzie added: “The industry is slightly wary in light of the damage the brothers inflicted on the industry with PB.”

Michael Bruce

He continued: “It’s the estate agents this time that they [the Bruce brothers] need to instill some trust in and that their intentions are sincere.”

“By settling our differences, we believe could have gone a long way to help them demonstrate just that. Sadly, we have reached out to Michael on a number of occasions about making a fresh start but were snubbed.”

Prospective customers can now review the Boomin model, and McKenzie is keen to highlight the fact that reviewers now have the option to keep their details private, should they feel uncomfortable voicing their open opinion.

Bruce has issued a response to McKenzie’s allegations.

He said: “We would like to thank allAgents for reaching out and for including Boomin on their supplier review page. Our Marketing team will be in touch to explore the commercial opportunities offered. We welcome open feedback, positive or negative, that will help us to continuously evolve and deliver a transformational experience for agents and customers.”

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25 Comments

  1. anon-mon73

    It was the one and only thing I liked about PB was the fact they stood up to the **** that is AllAgents

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    1. Bless You

      Like those fake votes trump keeps going on about…

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    2. Benco

      So are you having to wait up all night for your employer so you can be the first to comment?

      Report
  2. James White

    Headline:  All Agents tries to raise profile by piggy backing others……..

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    1. Bless You

      AllAgents did what regulators, propertymark, rightmove  , govt and asa were to stupid to do.

      Agents owe them massively.

       

       

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  3. DerekSharpham

    Allagents are an estate agent review site, not a portal review site…

    They’re just being bullies themselves.

    They are an industry joke

     

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    1. forwardthinker

      Yep I certainly felt bullied by them. Very aggressive outfit. Nearly lost sight of who was the client the way they dealt with me, needless to say never been associated with them. Plenty of other review sites I just don’t get AllAgents. Don’t understand Boomin either for that matter, but looks like the herd are on the move

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  4. Cyberpunk35

    How many times are we going to have to read articles loosely translated as “I hope we can trust the Bruce brothers this time”. Seriously? Setting up a charity really fools you guys? The definition of madness is repeating the same thing and expecting a different outcome. The Bruce’s want your money, your data and your public.

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    1. IheartRE

      ” The Bruce’s want your money, your data and your public.”
       
      Hear Hear!
      Well said @Cyberpunk35, you’re on the money mate.

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    2. forwardthinker

      Boom! Spot on 🙂

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  5. comment75

    It looks like allAgents are trying to expand their business entering into the supplier review race

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  6. Bless You

    Wow the bots are going crazy today protecting their new emoloyer.

    Exactly the kind of behaviour allAgents are warning about.

    Tbf I lost confidence in our abilities as an industry. Remember the one where rightmove doubled fees when onmatket killed zoople.

    Lol . Idiots.

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  7. That70sGuy

    I wonder if the bullying tactics extends to the staff he will employ there? His attitude towards staff when I worked for Purplebricks was disgusting

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    1. AgentQ73

      Hi That70sGuy

      How did the promises that were made to you when you joined PB compare to how things actually turned out ?

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      1. IheartRE

        @AgentQ73

        My experience was that it was all a bunch of BS.

        I was promised shares, support to grow my territory and a business I could one day sell.

        All BS to get me working long hours for less than minimum wage.

        I ended up with no shares, no support and no business to sell.

        Oh, but I did get a unique experience and I personally saw and heard about exploits by the Bruce Brother’s that left me scratching my head a lot.

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        1. AgentQ73

          @IheartRE Thanks for that, pretty much what I expected. Sounds like they have a track record of promising the earth to people in order to get the business of the ground then failing to deliver.

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      2. Auther Sleep

        I got offered shared instead of a Christmas bonus. They gave me them at £3.79p per share yet they were currently worth around £2.00. I left in February after. Terrible place

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  8. Property Ear

    Both All Agents and Purple Bricks have made a laughing stock of our industry. Why on earth any right minded professional agent should support either is difficult to comprehend.

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    1. forwardthinker

      Well said again!

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  9. HIT MAN

    AllAgents are just another scrounging cling on dipping into agents income by flattering them into thinking they are actually helping them. should have review sites for the review sites.

    The pressure is on the BBs imagine putting all their money into a failed attempt to to gain confidence from the very people they shafter over the years.

    Agents would be fools to board the same train for fear of the carriages falling off the back…FREE at first and if you decide to leave unfortunately you lose all your data and any residual income goes back to BBs.

     

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    1. AlwaysAnAgent

      I did smile at your cling-on comment

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  10. RichardHill61

    Who is worse?

    Allagents or PurpleBricks

    Too tight to call….

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  11. Charlie Lamdin

    It’s worth remembering that despite the high number of reported threats of legal action made by Purplebricks (against myself included), they never actually took anyone to court. All gong and no dinner. I would urge anyone on the receiving end of legal threats made by Boomin’ (and I predict it will only be a matter of time until the first ones happen) to remember the following:

    1. Lawyers aren’t judges. They can say and threaten whatever they like in a letter, but unless they issue court proceedings and a judge in a court makes a ruling or court order in their favour against you, you are free to ignore their letters. It costs very little for a lawyer to send a letter, it costs far more in time as well as money to bring a case to court.

    2. Remember that for a court to find in favour of a defamation claim, the plaintiff must PROVE that they have suffered financial loss as a direct result of published falsehood. So they need evidence of you PUBLISHING a falsehood, and evidence linking the consequences of that falsehood directly to their loss of income. The court cannot find against anyone who expresses an opinion. That is my understanding.

    PB has form when it comes to misleading adverts being banned by the ASA and their sales people tricking customers into signing credit agreements, resulting in poor Mikey grovelling on Watchdog, admitting it and saying they’ll do better. Perhaps they have learned something and will behave better this time, perhaps not. We shall see.

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  12. Woodentop

    The phrase “a leopard never changes its spots” means that it’s impossible for one to change their character, even if they will try very hard. The expression, sometimes also used as “a leopard can’t change its spots”, is used to explain the idea that no one can change their innate nature.

     

    Now who would that fit?

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  13. Malcolm Egerton

    AllAgents are a brilliant way of filtering out which agent to choose, a bit like Trustpilot and the other ‘review sites’: anyone using them is immediately off the list.

    Report
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