OnTheMarket has received a major boost with the recruitment of Arun Estates.
The firm has signed a five-year agreement which will kick in once OnTheMarket floats on the stock market.
Under the agreement, Arun Estates will advertise all of its UK residential sales and lettings properties at OTM and will actively promote the portal brand with digital and branch-based marketing activity.
With a network of over 100 branches across south-east England, Arun Estates trades not only under the Arun name but also under the local brands of Ward & Partners, Cubitt & West, Douglas Allen and Pittis.
David Lench, Arun Estates group managing director, said: “I believe that both agents and the property-seeking public will benefit from greater competition in the portal space and that a strongly funded agent-backed model is the most effective way to achieve it.
“I am delighted to declare the support of Arun Estates for OnTheMarket and to announce our strategic partnership commitment.”
Ian Springett, chief executive of OTM, said: “It is a powerful boost to OnTheMarket that Arun Estates is committing to list its properties for five years. Arun Estates is undoubtedly one of the leading, most successful agent groups in the regions where it operates and its support will substantially strengthen our position in the market.”
OnTheMarket also this morning announced the appointment of a new non-executive chairman, ahead of its proposed IPO.
He is Chris Bell, a former chief executive of Ladbrokes.
As announced on August 4, OTM will seek to offer a minority stake to investors as part of a proposed IPO on AIM. The objective is to raise approximately £50m of new equity capital which will be used to fund the growth of the portal. The ‘one other portal’ rule is set to be dropped on flotation.
The company has engaged Zeus Capital to manage the proposed placing and IPO. No date has yet been set for the IPO.