EYE NEWSFLASH: Foxtons shutting flagship Park Lane branch

Foxtons is closing its flagship central London office in Park Lane.

The Mayfair branch, in one  of London’s swankiest addresses, is rumoured to cost some £2m in rent a year. Staff will be re-locating from the office, a neighbour of London’s most famous hotels, to Marylebone.

This morning a Foxtons spokesperson confirmed to EYE: “At Foxtons, we believe it’s the service we deliver that makes Foxtons the best place to buy, sell, let or rent a property.

“That’s why we’re dedicated to setting the standard for the property industry, and always looking for new ways to serve our customers better.   We recently launched a new Foxtons Prime sales and lettings team focused on providing a bespoke service for high-net-worth individuals and their £3m+ properties.

“The team will be moving from their dedicated offices in Park Lane to our flagship Marylebone office to join up with our other services. The team will continue to cover Mayfair and the rest of Prime Central London whilst also working across our network of 65 branches in Greater London.”

Foxtons has been hard hit by the downturn in the London market. In July this year it posted a pre-tax loss for the first six months of  £2.5m, down from a profit of £3.8m for the same period in 2017.

Park Lane and Mayfair are  the most famous addresses on the Monopoly board.

The Park Lane office of Foxtons was considered so emblematic, that it was made the destination for the notorious easyProperty ‘funeral’ march, when the online agent made a show of its belief that high street agents were a dying breed.

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18 Comments

  1. MichaelDay

    FYI – Foxton’s Marylebone office is one mile from their Park Lane office not several miles!

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  2. J1

    £2m is a lot even on average fees of £25k per sale

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  3. smile please

    I suspect a lot of what a call vanity offices will close over the next 12 months.

    The cost to open that office for just 1 month is probably the entire yearly turnover for some firms.

    We have it near me, agents that have opened more offices when their current offices are not even posting profit.

    I know a chap in my area driving around in a Range Rover renting a property on a private estate yet has problems paying his staff end of the month.

    Agents that have cut their cloth accordingly will prosper in a tighter market. Agents that have been outsourcing, living on credit are in for a rude awakening.

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  4. Bless You

    how was that easy property stunt even legal?  why should innocent staff who just want to get on in life be victimised.

    People who celebrate this garbage are the ones who will moan the most when their kids are working in battery warehouses for bricks and amazon.

    Bitterness is the uk’s worst enemy.

    #brexit perfect example .

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    1. Bless You

      Shame really as it wasnt payanyway agents that killed our industry it was fake marketing.

      Rightmove have killed us by allowing new homes and payanyway agents free reign on the portal….that we all still use!!!!!!!!!!

       

       

       

       

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      1. Client1st

        Quite right. It hasn’t killed us, but I cant imagine what our industry will look like in ten years. We should all ditch RM and use OTM exclusively. That would sort matters out overnight.

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        1. J1

          OTM is not the answer either………in fact it is worse than RM; just cheaper

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        2. JonnyBanana43

          Why are agents so bitter about OTM. It’s bizarre

          OTM is the key to our future success.

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  5. Property Poke In The Eye

    Sensible move, at least they are taking action before its too late.

    There will be many estate agency closures over the coming months.

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  6. 1TB

    Fake Marketing you say!!!  Virtually every agent in existence does this.  Guarantee, half the properties on all the portals are no longer available, but continue to be listed ‘by the agent’ to get leads, based on fake marketing.  Agents blame everyone else but themselves.  One listing I personally inquired about, was told was sold, continued to be listed on all THREE portals for another 8 weeks.  No wonder why agents have such a dismal reputation.  Agents on the whole, can not be trusted.

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    1. smile please

      Who mentioned fake marketing?

      You okay hun?

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  7. mrtickle

    The nonsense statement is laughable.

    Don’t say you’re moving out of your office to make your team stronger. We all know you did it cos it’s too expensive.

    However, the real point is: I wonder how much goodwill value they put on that store.

    Being seen as the top agent in town must have its pull, Foxtons must be in real trouble if they’re genuinely willing to let their reputation suffer just to help their bottom line.

    Firstly, they’ll be less visible. That’s a knock-on effect right there.

    But secondly, people always talk when a big business downsizes (and this is definitely downsizing).

    If the customer sees a Foxtons that doesn’t have confidence in itself (even though that 2m rent a year is astronomical) then they will have less confidence in Foxtons.

    This is a bigger story than they’re letting on. I look forward to seeing how they respond.

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    1. P-Daddy

      Its sensible practice from what has been a vanity exercise, with big overheads and a declining income stream. But much of London has this vanity presence mentality…look at the fashion houses and luxury brands who have opened in Bond St, Brompton Road etc They did this once before…. who remembers their cutting edge office in the Brompton Road which shut promptly in the 90’s recession. As a business they will now need to evolve further. Their software was once cutting edge and so was their marketing/cars…..

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  8. watchdog13

    As the need for retail space declines due to better ways to interact with the customer, the move by Foxtons makes complete sense. The savings are probably a lot more than £2m a year if you consider all the operational costs that go along with running that office. Seems like a sensible move that will only benefit their bottom line.

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    1. PeeBee

      “As the need for retail space declines due to better ways to interact with the customer…”

      Let’s just get one thing straight here.  There is NO BETTER way to “interact” with anyone than face-to-face.

      You mean “cheaper” and/or “more convenient” in all their various guises.  BIG difference.

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  9. AgencyInsider

    Hats off to Foxtons. Whilst the statement is a ludicrous attempt to make the best of a bad situation, the fact is that their directors have looked at the books and the projections for the market and decided that they must make economies in order to survive for the long term. That is quite simply good management.

    Contrast this with the behaviours of most of the online lot who seems to think that money is for burning and that profit is not a necessary requirement in order to have a successful long term business.

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  10. WestMidsValuer97

    “dedicated to setting the standard in agency”

    Says who?!? Their success is measured on income. They were perfectly placed in the market when it took off and hats off to them for surviving with their astronomical overheads….but by no way should anyone think they set a standard purely on the basis of having, as many people of have already stated, a vanity office (or a few as they seem to have)

    This is a good decision but far too late….their vanity proceeded the quality of leadership as is incredibly clear by the fact they recorded a record loss – that would have been very easy to forecast and this action should have been taken long before, just to save face they failed.

    To little too late.

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  11. WestMidsValuer97

    Also…not sure about this Foxton Prime – if you look at their coverage in their “flagship” offices, the vast majority of the available property far exceeds the £3m they talk about….not sure what the point of branding a new section of the business would be??

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