EYE NEWSFLASH: Profits warning from Purplebricks

Purplebricks has released a trading update this morning cutting group revenue and profit guidance and replacing divisional CEOs in both the UK and US, after short tenures.

Group revenue guidance for the 2018/2019 financial year is cut from £165m-175m to £130m-£140m.

Shares plunged in early trading to £1 before recovering to around 120p.

In the UK business, the company is expecting 15-20% revenue growth compared with last year. It said it also expects to maintain its 75% share of UK online instructions and for Purplebricks to be the clear market leader in its sector. This morning’s guidance says that the UK business is expected to achieve an adjusted EBITDA margin in double digits.

However, in both the US and Australia traction is lower than expected with consumers, and both businesses will fail to meet expectations this year.

In Australia, the housing market has suffered “a number of headwinds”, and Purplebricks has made “positive changes” in its model. However, revenue will not meet expectations.

In the US, Purplebricks said it is making better than expected progress, with a recent change in the business model to payment on completion. However, the board does not expect the amount of US revenue to be sufficient to meet its expectations in this financial year.

In Canada, the business has performed well and is on track to meet expectations.

In the statement, it says that Purplebricks as at the end of last month had £71m cash. However, in its interim results for the six months ending October 31 last year, it stated that net cash was £103m. This suggests the company has been burning cash at the rate of £10m per month.

This morning’s statement also said that Purplebricks’ UK CEO Lee Wainwright, appointed about a year ago, will shortly be leaving the business. It said the departure is for personal reasons.

Wainwright was with Countrywide for 26 years before joining Purplebricks in March 2017 as chief operations officer. He became CEO in January last year.

The American CEO Eric Eckardt is also leaving, after two years.

Group CEO and founder Michael Bruce is taking over as day-to-day leader of the US business with immediate effect.

In the UK Purplebricks group chief operating officer Vic Darvey takes over as CEO. He joined the business only in January from MoneySupermarket.

Purplebricks said: “Vic has extensive experience of leading strong tech-focused, customer-centric businesses and will play a key role in the future direction and next stage of growth for Purplebricks.”

Today’s statement said: “The board wishes to thank Lee and Eric for their contribution.”

Michael Bruce said: “Although there are macro and industry headwinds across markets we are well placed to capitalise on the significant opportunity for growth that exists in each country, albeit not entirely as we would have wanted before our year end.

“The UK is leading the way with continued profitable growth and a strategy to deliver greater success. I am also excited to be taking the reins of the US business.

“The team in Australia are building on the changes they implemented late last year and Canada is delivering on plan and expectations.

“The board remains confident of the long-term growth potential of the business and the opportunity to deliver substantial value for shareholders.”

City analyst William Packer, of Exane BNP Paribas, said: “Purplebricks’ disruptive model has grown rapidly in the UK in recent years and is now among the leading agents in the UK.

“Today’s update underpins our view that Purplebricks is set to remain an important UK player but a hoped-for massive scaling is unlikely in our view. We view this as reassuring for Rightmove, the UK’s leading property portal, which we rate outperform.”

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  1. PeeBee

    Lights blue touchpaper…

    Grabs popcorn…

    Sits back.

    1. Moveaside01

      Yep! There goes the wheels…

    2. Bless You

      Its just been a messy for years waiting for this fake business model to be exposed.

      In my day companies at least had to make money before they killed an industry.

      Sadly due to Hedge fund money and support from zoopla and rightmove the rules have changed for the worse.

    3. HertsLocalagent


    4. GPL

      Ground Control to Major Tom….
      ”We’re f****d”.
      £1.22p Share Price at 10am, fallen from £1.66 at opening….. under a £1 at 8.30am?
      ……buckle up folks, it’s going to be a bumpy ride, please check your parachutes are working!

      1. NewsBoy

        I see they have now hit a 52 week low!!





  2. smile please

    Rats, ship, sinking.

  3. AgencyInsider

    ‘The wheels on the bus come off, off, off…’

  4. Light

    … and the dinosaurs roared, because the shining dot in the sky disappeared over the horizon.

    “It’s gone for good” they all said, laughing.

    1. HertsLocalagent

      Love this

  5. Leespoon

    A profits ‘warning’?…. to who? You mean those sharp eyed investors didn’t see this coming? Really? How strange!

    Sorry, I should have issued a ‘sarcasm warning’

    1. Bless You

      Well they sort of did. Share price was 500p a few months ago. Mostly private investors stuck with last ones. Eh rob the  pog

  6. jeremy1960

    Profits warning? How can a business that has never made a profit issue a profits warning?

    Better headline – ‘ black hole at burble *ricks gets deeper!’

  7. man perero

    This update should surprise no-one. PB are one trick ponies and it is not a very good one!! The fundamentals of this business do not work and they never will. Investors in this company should temper any plans of a dividend for some time yet !!!

  8. Mark Connelly

    When I saw the headline “Profits warning” I thought they were warning shareholders that they had finally made one.

    1. Chris Wood

      Comment of the week, right there.

      1. HertsLocalagent

        Chris Wood pops up again

        1. Chris Wood

          Be honest, you’d be disappointed if I hadn’t. X 

          1. Bless You

            Well done chris wood for your continued work.
            You should be knighted for doing the work of paidAnyway companies like: 
            trading standards.
            PropertyMark ( whoever they are) ,
            the govt. 
            asa ( advertsing hand slappers) .
            Bless You for leading the industry through the waters of evil. lol…bit serious that.

            1. Chris Wood

              I once formed part of an honour guard for Her Majesty, that’s honour enough for me.


              ….But I won’t send any invite back to the palace if it’s offered =D

  9. RichardHill61

    Perhaps it’s a warning to investors that they are finally actually going to make a profit in case a few have bad tickers!!

    Or is it April 1st!?

  10. Ric

    No surprise.

    Business model has worked though! The CEO etc only ever wanted to use deluded investors to shift shares, making a million or two on each sale of shares. (Can’t fault em, to be fair) but…

    They never had a “Proper” estate agency business plan where you make more money each month than you spend!

  11. Mark Walker

    Let’s put a CD on and listen to how this is a positive for the firm…

  12. Ric

    jeez, Am I reading the LSE correctly? 35% drop already this morning??? Have I missed something?

    1. smile please

      Wake up call.

  13. Mark Walker

    Almost halved the share price.

  14. Ric

    incredible…. never liked hitting F5 on the keyboard so much!

  15. Ric

    0.99p wowsers

  16. watchdog13

    Dictionary result for schadenfreude

    /ˈʃɑːd(ə)nˌfrɔɪdə,German ˈʃɑːdənˌfrɔydə/


    pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune.

    1. HertsLocalagent

      How did you feel about the LSL news?

      1. watchdog13

        They haven’t spent millions of pounds trashing high street agents.

        1. HertsLocalagent

          Competition will trash you, publicly and privately. Focus on you

  17. DarrelKwong43

    no mention of Brexit?

    1. Ric

      Brexit is going better!

  18. Leeds Agent

    Whether you choose to admit it or not they have a profitable UK business which is established a significant market share over a matter of just a few years.

    Purplebricks issue is that it has accepted a huge investment from a business only interested because of their long term vision to create an international brand. If this proves not to be possible and their huge cash reserves are swallowed up by propping up these international businesses then yes they have real problems.

    Right now to win all those UK Listings they are on TV, Radio, billboards, buses, tubes… spending fortunes on PPC and anything else that moves. If they cease to be able to do this because of the cash needed to support those overseas interests then and only then do they have a real problem.

    In the meantime this is just a bump in the road and nothing more. Under estimate them at your peril.

    1. PeeBee

      “Right now to win all those UK Listings they are on TV, Radio, billboards, buses, tubes… spending fortunes on PPC and anything else that moves.”
      So – just to clarify, then – they are not ‘winning’ business – they are buying it in at huge cost.
      And, what’s more – buying it with advertising full of what some might say is, at very least,’questionable’ messages and information.

      1. Leeds Agent

        This is the exact point.
        Their cost to acquire business per listing is sky high at present and with the cash they have they have been able to support that approach.
        The question for me is whether in the fullness of time they would be able to reduce their marketing spend per listing having established themselves as a go to agent across the country. Clearly we are nowhere near that point which makes today’s news about their struggles abroad so pertinent. 

    2. WiltsAgent

      Just read this, I didn’t realise Leeds was another planet.

      1. Leeds Agent

        Haha… yep you need a special passport to get in to God’s country. 
        Just to give you an insight to our market. Online/hybrid/self-service agents own around 12% of everything that lists in the area we cover and Purplebricks have a 65% share of that (been measuring this since 2015). They are a key player in our market and so clearly it sounds like we live on very different planets. 

        1. Quags

          So they have 65% share of 12% of the market.  Was clearly worth all those millions.

          Wow, thank you for emphatically confirming what everyone else thinks.

          1. smile please

            50% Of the time, works every time.

            Is that Sex Panther aftershave or PurpleBricks? 😉

        2. PeeBee

          “Online/hybrid/self-service agents own around 12% of everything that lists in the area we cover and Purplebricks have a 65% share of that…”
          How many of the six (or more…) LPEs that PB currently display on their website as covering “Leeds” (plus one Lettings) work in ‘your patch’, Leeds Agent?

          1. Leeds Agent

            Fantastic question and to be honest I couldn’t tell you exactly as it’s all a bit smoke and mirrors.

            We do know of four that are really active but interestingly in our patch they also have a business park office which provides back end support for admin and sales progression. We don’t know how many people work in that but must at least 8 to 10.

            The thing that I believe we have to watch, and I know this had been referred to many times, is their cost per instruction which I can imagine at present must be either growing or plateauing at best. To create a truly sustainable business that cost has to come down. Simple as that.

            1. PeeBee

              Do a search on the PB website with various postcodes you cover – the answers will come up.
              BUT… based on your estimate of four, that’s like having four branches of any corporate or independent in a town scrabbling for what is actually only EIGHT PERCENT of the available market.
              How much thought do you give to your local Blagitt and Scarper types, stuck down some back street at the cr@p end of town who have two percent of the market?
              I sincerely hope it’s ‘not a lot’…

    3. chrisyboy1976

      PB have spent far too much on advertising to buy the business that they are getting, there is a very good reason most estate agents don’t use TV and Radio and national press advertising and that’s because it isn’t cost effective.

      They have bought a market share, are not providing as good a service (please feel free to look at the stats that show online agents get on average 5% less than high street agents, see the stats that show average time on the market or % of stock sold) I am not saying this is in all cases as there are son PB reps (I cant bring myself to call them LPE’s) who are doing a good job.

      In addition to this the turnover of staff for the virtual agents is huge meaning that vendors don’t have the continuity that they would get with a genuine local agent with low staff turnover.

      The reality is that there are two ways to view the business (a bit like Brexit) the bought business where money is being spent making lots of promises that investors and vendors have bought into and then the facts that are very different and the promises of being financially better off that for the investors who are losing money because the business is still not making a profit and the share price is now less than they paid and the vendors who thought they were saving money by paying less upfront who then either sell for 5% less nullifying the saving they made or alternatively never sell and have paid for a service they didn’t actually receive are finding out to be misleading (much like the PB adverts)

      Part of me feels sorry for the good agents who have gone down the online route believing thats the way forward when the reality is without the expensive advertising they would not have the market share they have as the reputation isnt good enough and whilst they are shelling out so much on prime time marketing they will not make a profit especialy in a tougher market where agents have to earn their money!

  19. AgencyInsider

    ‘This morning’s statement also said that Purplebricks’ UK CEO Lee Wainwright, appointed about a year ago, will shortly be leaving the business. It said the departure is for personal reasons.’

    Don’t you just love the smell of BS in the morning?

  20. Property Ear

    Who’s got cake on their face now?

    This is what happens when your clients don’t pay commission.


  21. 40yearvetran08

    Michael Bruce said: “Although there are macro and industry headwinds across markets we are well placed to capitalise on the significant opportunity for growth that exists in each country, albeit not entirely as we would have wanted before our year end.

    Why not speak in normal language rather than mumbo jumbo. Basically you are plain F*****

  22. Chris Wood

    Commisery: (noun) the amount of fees charged by stockbrokers to dump unwanted shares quickly.   (Pinched from an industry giant this morning who wishes to remain nameless)

  23. Ric

    right I’m depressed now…. back to £1.14…. where the money on it settling? £1.22 to £1.25 – the F5 button is getting a rest.

    1. Ric

      £1.25. Not a bad guess.

  24. Andy Halstead

    Purple bricks down. Countrywide down. The market is perfect for the Owner Drivers to take full advantage. Fees will see an upward trend as customer service and results become the differentiator. Game on for the independents who have held their nerve and their teams together. 

  25. Chris Wood

    No Dom and Ducky show? How odd.

    1. Mark Walker 2

      Too busy this morning making up accounts on LSE Chat and saying positive things about PB.

  26. hampshirechap85

    Priceless! Vendors are really beginning to see through all this nonsense where we are. Like everything in life, you get what you pay for.

  27. cyberduck46

    Question marks over the future of the USA & Oz.


    The UK looks pretty flat in terms of growth over February 2018 according to my proxy. Around 250 listings yesterday but fewer LPEs than this time last year. Still looking like a viable business to me.


    Prudent management would keep USA as a separate business and all signs so far is that this is exactly what they have done when raising capital. It will be up to investors whether they continue to invest in that market and they will clearly have the data at hand to make that decision. With only £70m remaining that decision will probably be just a few months away.






    1. Quags

      La la la la la la la la not listening la la la la la la

  28. WiltsAgent

    They are burning their cash at between £8m-£10m every month. They only have enough cash to get to September. Unless they can mug another ‘investor’ it’s all over by August.

    1. AgentQ73

      Wonder how long it takes for the lucky ones that they do sell to get through from instruction to completion. If they are burning through £10 million a month and have £70 million it’s an even worse idea for a vendor to gamble their money.

    2. Chris Wood

      With liabilities in perpetuity, they should consider whether they have the assets to continue trading 

    3. digitalfix

      Not quite dear boy.  Purple Bricks have a market capitalisation of over £300m.

      Cash in bank and value are different things.  Need more cash?  Sell more value (shares).

      1. AgentQ73

        To who and at what price ?

        1. digitalfix

          Er, anyone in the world… and at a price that is already set by the market.
          I wonder how many people on this forum actually followed through on their armchair criticism of PurpleBricks and shorted the stock in July 2017? 
          Surely the share price movement this morning would have brought about cries of a ‘windfall’ rather than the same old ‘Ha Ha – it was never going to work’ rhetoric that we see so often.
          The silence is deafening! If certain individuals had the balls to put their money where their mouth is, they would be far richer this morning than they will be spending a lifetime shooting from the fingertips.

          1. Property Pundit

            So what you’re saying is agents should really be dealing in shares and not selling property? Moron.

          2. AgentQ73

            So if PB needed to raise £120mill to get them through the next 12 months what effect would dumping that amount of shares on the stock market have ?

          3. smile please

            @Digitalfix – How did that work out for Countrywide? They tried that and now have a share price bouncing around 0.8p and 0.11p for the last 8 months.

          4. WiltsAgent

            A company called Quindell tried the same trick and that didn’t end well. If you are happy to buy shares in a company spending other people’s money at the current rate and no chance of a profit or dividend be my guest. As for a market capitalisation of £300m well that’s a bit like yesterday’s news that some other onliner has booked the value of his software a £2.6m, creative/delusional accounting. Purplebricks is and always has been a vehicle to enrich the Bruces et al. In that respect it has been a huge success. By all other measures it’s a dog.

  29. davehedgehog

    Can anyone guess what I will be printing out and posting through Purple bricks boards today – Don’t get mad….

    1. jackobabe70

      Isn’t it just a pity you didn’t win the business in the first place.

      Be better than this!

      1. PeeBee


        You can’t “win the business in the first place” when you haven’t been invited into the living room

        You can’t “win the business in the first place” when the homeowner has been effectively ‘sold to’ remotely by a shower of TV adverts full of at best dubious claims and subliminal messages.

        You can’t “win the business in the first place” when the business was never offered to be won.

        You can’t “win the business in the first place” if the only way to win it is to do it at best ‘at cost’, or at worst where it actually costs you money every time,

        Actually – on that last point.. you can.

        The one that did it best was called eMoov.

  30. Rivero

    I have to agree with Leeds Agent and cyberduck46 on this. As much as we all want this to be the ringing of the death knell, I think long term this is merely a blip for their UK business…providing they are able to continue to grow market share in the UK.

    It’s therefore critical for us all to keep on top of our game in our respective areas and not be complacent.

  31. cyberduck46

    That was what my proxy told me earlier for the preceding 24 hour period. Just checked for the last 24 hours and it’s 240.
    Similar to the numbers in February 2018 as is the whole of February.
    What does your proxy tell you then?
    Come on. How does February 2018 compare with February 2019 numbers according to your proxy?

    1. Rivero

      I’ll need to ask my proxy by proxy

      1. AgencyInsider

        Proxy Music. Fab band.

    2. cyberduck46

      My post above was in response to one from PeeBee where he said my figures were high. Well actually he said they were bollo**s.   
      Looks like he’s deleted it. I wonder why?  
      I won’t be coming back now. Point made. If PeeBee just left me alone it would be appreciated. I know he doesn’t like hearing the truth and manageing that anger is a problem for him.    

      1. Property Pundit

        Bye then.

      2. PeeBee

        I did delete my message – posted in response to your comment
        “Around 250 listings yesterday but fewer LPEs than this time last year.”
        because I couldn’t figure which “yesterday” it was that you were referring to.
        The listings total shown at or before 0908 when you posted refers to the previous 24 hours business.
        On that basis, the 250 you quoted wasn’t too far off being correct, therefore my comment would have been incorrect – hence the deletion.  
        BUT THEN you go and drop yourself in it with your next post, clarifying that, in fact, you were referring to the previous 24 hours (ie yesterday morning’s totals).
        So, that being the case, I will reinstate my original statement that the figure of “Around 250 listings…” for the 24 hour period to 0900+/- on 20/2 is, as per my deleted response, utter, complete b0110cks.
        Have another count.  Clue – it’s not HIGHHEEERRRR…

      3. PeeBee

        “If PeeBee just left me alone it would be appreciated.”
        I chuffin’ bet it would.  Make your little ducky life a whole lot easier… one less to expose the chasms in your agenda.
        Ain’t gonna happen, ducky. Suck it up.

        1. PeeBee

          Actually, ducky…
          Is that a genuine request? 
          A plea to my better nature?
          If it is… then maybe we can make it happen.

  32. El Burro

    Pop go the weasels (it’s half term in the EB house)

  33. htsnom79

    I would imagine there are a number of smart-R-sez making good money today, getting out in the 140s/150s and buying back at less than a quid, reminiscent of the fantastic Trading Places which has also just reminded me of Jamie Lee Curtis………

    1. watchdog13

      and having bought OTM in the 70s….


  34. charlie.wright

    The sooner they fail and close, the sooner innocent first time sellers will stop losing the £1,000 coin toss along with the time wasted when needing to sell for the first time. I don’t wish for anything bad for anyone running a business of any kind UNLESS you are misleading (as upheld by ASA decisions on their advertising) people into parting with money that they would NOT choose to have spent if they had fully understood what they were buying. Caveat emptor (buyer beware) is advice parents give to their children to help them avoid sharks, it is not a justification for a business model. It boils my blood how they continue to accept £1,000 from people with only a 50% chance of actually achieving a sale. Most agents I know wouldn’t dream of accepting money from a client until the job is done.

    Honestly, the faster they’re gone, the better for everyone, and a hard lesson learned for their investors: you cannot commoditise personal service.

    1. Property Pundit

      With other major call-centre listers now moving to offer a No Sale – No Fee option, despite their size in the sector, PB will be forced to follow suit. This will only accelerate the demise of this sector.

  35. gardenflat

    They should give their notice to RM 🙂

  36. Londonbound

    England is profitable.

    (You guys have selective reading skills)

    UK business is very good, thanks for asking.

    1. htsnom79

      Has been profitable in a buyers market ( fixed that for ya ), I’ve just spent the best part of a week putting a deal together which entailed moving up and down a forming chain getting little concessions here and there to make the base tie, PB would not even understand what I’ve just said let alone perform the same role on behalf of their client, they wouldn’t get any further than the vendor saying no on an app, full stop end of. 

    2. inthefield

      Its not good though is it Londonbound? This is the tip of the massive iceberg. The truth is if PB weren’t able to spend millions per month on advertising they would quickly disappear. When the investors start pulling out their cash its over. Any of the investors in PB now will be looking to get out while they can. When they do its curtains. You cant be an estate agent with a bad reputation. Simple. You can buy business in the short term, but long term they would have to prove they can talk the talk. Theres not enough time left for them to do that before they run out of ready cash to spend.

  37. apples

    Hi guys, I’m doing a survey on the property portals, I’ve had a fantastic response, the results are presented when the survey has been completed, it focuses on Rightmove. Please do it if you have a spare few minutes. Also please share with estate agent friends.




    1. GeorgeOrwell

      Sorry? Who are you? and who are you conducting a survey for?
      It’s rude not to respond!  

  38. GeorgeOrwell

    “Hello Mr Ashley?”

    ”It’s Purplebricks here, we were wondering…….”

    ”Hello, Hello… Mr Ashley???”


    ”Oh, Hello, is that Sir, Lord, Mr Green… would you be interested in…”

    ”Hello, Hello… Hello???”

    A Day in the Life of the CEO of Purplebricks

    1. ArthurHouse02

      Never now what his game is, but Mr Ashley likes the high street, he doesnt do online gimmicky stuff. As for Mr Green, he’s probably on his boat somewhere, sinking maybe!

    2. Ric

      Crowdfunding next…. when the bank says no and the City has woken up… you can turn to the Crowdfunding but brigade.

  39. Keyser Söze

    Michael Bruce: “The UK is leading the way with continued profitable growth and a strategy to deliver greater success.”

    If the UK is profitable and a shining beacon of your success. Why have you sacked the CEO Lee Wainwright?

    1. real_estate_truth

      And they replaced him with someone that has no experience in the industry. . . 

      1. Keyser Söze

        It’s a poisoned chalice!

  40. GeorgeOrwell

    “In the financial year which ended in April of last year it reported a loss of £26m, up from £6m in the previous year.
    In today’s statement Mr Bruce said the company was in a good position to take advantage of growth potential in the UK, US and Australia, but added “albeit not entirely as we would have wanted before our year end”
    Then add this…

    The company expects sales for the current financial year of between £130m and £140m. Its previous forecast was between £165m and £175m”

    Lets hope the vendor realises that the “sales” referred to only refer to the money they (the vendor) paid up-front whether their house sold or not, whether Purplebricks were in business or not?

    Actual properties Sold?! Nobody knows because PB have been so secretive about the most important statistic of all. That’s the monster elephant hidden away just waiting to burst through the door and reveal the real truth

    It’s no longer gambling on red or black, we now have purple which is the biggest gamble of all. Today we see all bets are off with Purplebricks!



  41. real_estate_pro

    Michael and Kenny Bruce have been influencing all markets since they launched and from what we’ve heard and the global leadership teams seem to have had enough (no autonomy). Michael Bruce has had the reins in the US, influencing the business day to day and lived 5 minutes from the US California office prior to launch purchasing a multi million dollar home from the proceeds of his equity sales at high trading levels. Strong bias from the UK team on all areas of the business across all regions in UK, Aus, and US.  Purplebricks lost some really good people already in all markets. Seems they also brought in someone with zero real estate experience to lead the UK.  Time for an adult to run the global business and let the Bruce’s focus on something else.  It seems the ride the is over for them. 

  42. GPL

    …..and a memorable day because of another statistic.

    …..as we approach/exceed the 100 post barrier for a Purplebricks story.

    Do we all get a Special Commerative Badge today with the words, perhaps….

    ”Commemorating  the Day Purplebricks were finally found out!”



  43. Hillofwad71

    Well where do they go to from here ?Too many over promoted regional directors who have enjoyed share optionswho occupy roles purely as they were there on  Day  1.Not on  merit  Out of choice they wont be going anywhere .

    Same with Territory Managers . Clean sweep required

    New broom Vic?/



    Well he had a long stint at Lastminute.com 2004-2010

    Investors can take heed from this

    In December 2014, the firm was bought by Bravofly Rumbo for £76 million, a fraction of the £600 million Sabre had paid for it in 2005


  44. SLF

    Another day of competition bashing and gloating over another estate agents problems. Even in the high street I would never have wished a fellow agent misfortune or worst still celebrate inevitable job losses.

    Very sad attitude guys and one which doesn’t reflect well on our industry.

    1. htsnom79

      Well, thankfully I haven’t been burdened with Mother Theresa syndrome since birth and have always been prepared to call a wrong un when I see it, I have seen it and I’m calling it, burn PB, burn.

      1. SLF

        …just burdened with irrational fear of the competition syndrome and an enjoyment of other people misfortune syndrome. As I say, sad attitude.

        1. agent orange

          And then in fluffy wuffy land, all the agents had a nice cup of tea together and gave themselves a nice pat on the back.
          I for one will be gladly getting out the marshmallows and toasting them on the embers of their burning business. i will then sleep soundly.

        2. htsnom79

          I have an irrational fear of spiders ( in the UK, outside the UK the fear gets a legit upgrade ) and a perfectly rational fear of incompetents messing up my chains.

      2. Rivero

        Out of curiosity…what make you describe them as a ‘wrong un’?

        In your view have they allowed themselves to be compromised ethically, morally or legally in some way?

        1. htsnom79

          Rivero, I do not have the time to type it all for you, to quote another regular poster, Do Your Own Research and then benchmark it against your personal experience in this industry, you may find your personal epiphany.

          1. Rivero

            Fair dues…I think I’ve met epiphany at a club before.

    2. whodis123

      SLF – U ok hun?

      Considering that PB have spent pretty much their entire existence slating and slagging off traditional agents it’s a bit rich expecting traditional agents to then have sympathy for them when it goes **** up!

    3. Robert May

      If an agent local to you was  consistently and constantly misrepresenting their performance and  mis-representing the service they  offer  by making a  false claim that their service is comparable with your own. If they claimed #local expertise or  industry experience or qualification they did not have, you would let that ride and say nothing about it?  I suspect  you wouldn’t


      Are you truly claiming  agents whose businesses have suffered financially and whose professionalism has been  deliberately targeted should simply turn a cheek and feel no joy when the baiting stops?

      I have consistently said there are good agents within Purplebricks, they, the company and the business model are let down by overly ambitious plans for  global domination

  45. The Blame Game

    And here endeth the lesson…..well almost?

  46. AgentQ73

    Wouldn’t like to be  territory owner when the inevitable happens. No money from PB and you are on the hook for the LPEs monthly invoice. No redundancy just treated as a creditor.


  47. AgentV

    Only caught up with this news at the end of the day. Guess everything has been said!





  48. GPL

    FEBRUARY 21, 2019 AT 14:53#104
    Another day of competition bashing and gloating over another estate agents problems. Even in the high street I would never have wished a fellow agent misfortune or worst still celebrate inevitable job losses.
    Very sad attitude guys and one which doesn’t reflect well on our industry.

    I’ll print this SLF, perforate and hang in the public toilets!

    ”fellow agent?” ……wake up!!!

    Purplebricks are NOT Estate Agents, they are mime artists! They mimic real estate agents and then ridicule them in a sleazy effort to grab market share.

    Frankly I would run a story on your aforementioned comment and crowdfund to raise money to send you on a detoxification course to rid you of your PB Syndrome.

    It’s a cheap, meaningless comment from someone who clearly fails to recognise or chooses to ignore the real work that real estate agents do.

    Purplebricks are not credible, never have been credible and strive to be a cheap imitation to fool the public. As long as any PB clients actually understand that they are paying for a “fake” by employing PB, that’s fine …..however, many PB clients don’t know that, and only realise they have been suckered when it’s too late!

    I don’t know you SLF however that 1 comment tells me all I need to know.

    You don’t understand real Estate Agents and real Estate Agency …..enjoy your virtual world even although the millions lost are very, very real!


    1. Property Ear

      Very well put GPL. The guy sounds deluded.

    2. SLF

      I do understand real estate agency,  was in the high street for 20+ years. Manager and Area Manager with several corporates and a large independent. I’m now with a non high street agent.

      The issues I and others like me have is that we know exactly how the high street works, 99% of posters on here don’t know how non high street work because they’ve never done the job.

      I’m told by others on here that I’m not local to my patch…I am.

      I’m told that I have little or no experience…I have.

      I’m told that I don’t progress my sales…I do.

      I’m told that I’m not transparent with my fees…I am.

      I’m told that I have no incentive to sell if I list with pay now…..I have

      I’m told that I don’t understand the high street….I do

      I’m not a Chris Wood fan at all. His change of model is comedy gold BUT I’ve no doubt he will make a reasonable success of his new venture if he can focus on the business rather than bashing the competition. The reason, he’s a good, experienced, competent estate agent. He’ll do everything that the vast majority of non high street agents do and offer the best service he can. There are many very good estate agents just like Chris out there working non high street and offering a great full service. It’s just that most of those on here choose not to see or believe it.

      Anyway, said my bit and won’t be posting on or reading pie any more (I know, no big loss!) Good luck all


      1. htsnom79

        Stockholm syndrome mate, come back, it still ain’t easy but good teams can still flourish and have fun doing it, no need for the no man’s land you’re in, good indies will give you whatever autonomy you want, if you’re good enough.

        Good luck ( no sarcasm )

      2. GPL


        Due respect for responding SLF however if you believe that Purplebricks and the other mime artist Onliners are “just like Estate Agents” then you are either mistaken or deluded.

        You may well be a talented Estate Agent however when you chose to support/promote/portray Onliners as real Estate Agents you flushed your credibility far, far away.

        I walked away from a well known corporate years ago when my Sales Director started a pep talk on a New Pet Insurance Product that was being launched, and we were to sell it?! I valued my credibility and my profession above my employer’s view of what Estate Agents do. I said then, and I say now …….real Estate Agents are much rarer than one thinks. I live n’ breathe to deliver the best result for my clients, they are not “just a client!”.

        When Purplebricks ran their dumb/demeaning/disrespectful ads, portraying themselves as Estate Agents and then denigrating real Estate Agents (pouring milk over your head because you chose a real Estate Agent?!)…… did they ever believe when their House of Cards was exposed/started to crumble that real Estate Agents would not only, never shed a tear, those real Estate Agents would rejoice that those Mime Artist Onliners were finally exposed for what they are.

        If you value your own credibility as an Estate Agent then go and work for a proper Estate Agent rather than tuck quietly into the slipstream of the Mime Onliners……

        I and many, many others shed no tears for those that support Mime Onliners …..why would we? …….you were only too happy to sit smugly when your employer ran their fake ads dumbing down Estate Agency and kicking hard working honest/real Estate Agents who chose to remain true to their profession rather than sell-out.

        I don’t believe in “scabs” or division whether based on religion/race/profession etc, however I do believe that if you value your own credibility you must not be carried along on a wave created by others. You chose your path and good or bad it’s your choice, as I and others have chosen theirs…. but don’t disrespect me by aligning Mime Onliners with myself and other Estate Agents.

        ……and one final point, don’t simply walk away from PIE because you don’t like the “flak”. You are entitled to your voice/opinion and neither of us need to agree ……it’s democracy.

        …….and really finally! …….if your are a Mime Onliner? …….sell yourself and your company without belittling High Street/Local Estate Agents, secure your business on your ability, not by cheap jibes against real Estate Agents.




      3. Chris Wood

        I don’t bash anyone unless I believe they are making provably false claims or, claims that cannot be substantiated. I’ve spent 30 years trying to make our industry more accountable and better policed for the sake of consumers and agents alike.

        I’ve upset and alienated many in that time as a result. It’s also cost me dearly in many ways. Consequences I acknowledged and accepted at the time and continue to bear. I make no apologies for speaking my mind and I always apologise when I know I’ve called it wrong or, spoken incorrectly. I’ve also made it clear on numerous occasions that I believe everyone has a right to try new methods and business models as long as they obey the law. Where a law is bad or outdated, it must be challenged but, legitimately.

        Frankly, I don’t give a flying foxbat if you like me, loathe me, or think I’m a bad industry joke; unless I know and respect you, your professionalism, integrity and, your opinion matters to me, your opinion of me counts for nothing.

      4. Property Pundit

        Bye then.

  49. PaulC

    We need a non branded A4 PDF which states facts about

    EMOOV/TEPILO collapse

    Purple Bricks Share collapse

    and the risks of paying upfront.

    Chris, fancy working on this with me? Then make it avaiable to the industry? Thoughts?

  50. LSagent

    Hi guys,

    My first comment here so please be kind!

    I feel compelled to post on this particular article as there has been a lot of bad news within the industry in the month of feb in addition to an increasingly tough market.

    I am a former Purplebricks LPE in between two stints at LSL (currently still in my 2nd and have been franchised as part of the restructure). To me this news is sad, just as the news about Countrywide and subsequently the LSL news. I have been an agent for 11 years and have strived in that time to give my clients the best possible service I could. While I was at PB this was no different, I listed at 56% and sold at 97% but I refused to overvalue as I believe morally and professionally it was wrong.

    Ultimately though, this was essentially the reason I left Purplebricks. Being self employed and incentivised to list, how else was I to pay my bills when I was converting at a high rate anyway? The number of valuations wasn’t high enough to support my income needs and so it was a choice- Do I overvalue to stop me losing based on price or do I go back to the high street where I can value honestly safe in the knowledge I will be paid at the end of the month? The choice was simple and I cant regret leaving PB especially in light of the recent news (although my old TO has been in touch twice since the LSL restructure news asking me to go back)

    In any case, seeing agents out of job isn’t fun to watch and I think its nothing for us to celebrate. I’ve always believed in ‘staying in my own lane’ and not ‘watching the competition’ as I believed it detracted from the job I was doing for my clients, some of the people here celebrating PB’s possible demise would do well to remember that some good agents (and admittedly there are some bad ones) could be at risk here.

    1. PeeBee

      LSagent – welcome to EYE!  As to whether it’s a baptism by fire or a walk in the park is to be seen – but you score kudos points for putting your head above the parapet far as I’m concerned.
      Can’t guarantee to be kind – but I’ll play by the rules if you do!
      Couple of questions if I may in relation to your post.
      Firstly – when you posted ” I listed at 56% and sold at 97% “ – can we just confirm that with those stats you mean you listed 56% of appraisals?
      And that your average selling price was 97% of asking price?  Assuming the answer be yes, may I ask further whether the 97% was of ORIGINAL LISTING price, or price shown at time of offer?
      What seems to be missing in the above is your listings to “sales” stat.  I’d like to ask you for both stats both, please – the “sales agreed” to listings, and the sales actually completed to listings.
      And how did you fare with your target for Trustpilot reviews?
      In your post you follow on with “…but I refused to overvalue as I believe morally and professionally it was wrong.”  I genuinely applaud your personal moral stance on that, but please don’t forget that it’s a chunk worse than that – it’s in direct contravention of Estate Agency Legislation and various Codes of Practice (including TPO, that PB are Members of) – but that doesn’t seem to stop people.
      I’m a bit confused by your statement “The number of valuations wasn’t high enough to support my income needs and so it was a choice- Do I overvalue to stop me losing based on price or do I go back to the high street where I can value honestly safe in the knowledge I will be paid at the end of the month?”
      If the volume of valuations wasn’t high enough to pay you a decent wage, then all the overvaluing in the world wasn’t going to change a negative into a positive.  Whereas more SALES = more SOLD boards… which breeds more business, surely?
      Now – to your final paragraph.  Posters “taking pleasure in the loss of others’ jobs” isn’t something you are seeing here.  I don’t think that many on here have ever laid directly into a single person working the streets for PB.  I would also say that many who comment regularly have openly acknowledged that PB etc have a number of good people working for them – in exactly the same way that a number of poor people are working in the ‘traditional’ sector of the industry.  What you have to acknowledge here is that it has been companies like PB who have ridiculed, cheapened and deprofessionalised our industry in their own attempt to take it over – in effect aiming to put companies out of business and therefore forcing job losses.  The fact that it hasn’t happened is irrelevant – it’s what was set out to be the result of a fight that has been rumbling on now for a decade or so and doesn’t seem to be nearing the end of round 1.
      GOOD Agents will always have a job.  BAD Agents will always find employment. What you are seeing is the lifecycle of Agency.  Companies… strategies… they all come and go with the various ebbs and flows of the market.
      The ‘online model’ hasn’t been the asteroid they thought they were – or that which they convinced their potential staff they were going to be.
      Look forward to your response.

      1. LSagent

        Hi Peebee to acknowledge your points of the listings I saw I converted 56%, of the instructions I gained, I sold 97% of those. I rarely had to reduce prices and as such either achieved extremely close to asking price, asking price or over. What many agents forget today is that by pricing a property strategically to get viewings through the door, we can do the very job vendors pay us to and get them the best price. In addition I can’t give you stats on my fall through rates, I can only say I only had a couple come back to market that were then resold. My point regarding the number of valuations was that in order for me to continue to build my business and continue working there, I either needed to see more or list more. The easiest way for any valuer to list more is to overvalue (irrespective of TPO etc if we deny it happens we are kidding each other) but I’ve already listed the reasons I personally wouldn’t do it. So that means I need to see more, the responsibility to provide me with more lay with PB and i have to be honest and say I rarely saw a tv advert. I felt I held up my end of the bargain, I listed well, I sold well, I provided a good service, I generated a good number of Trustpilot reviews at sale agreed and completion stage rather than instruction as the LPE’s are trained to do so, in return I blew through my savings trying to persevere with the offering.
         I wasn’t specifically saying in this thread, in a number of threads I’ve read, the hope for PB demise has been strong, which I can understand to an extent. I hope that answers your questions? If not please let me know, I’ve no hidden agenda, I’m just passionate about agency.   

  51. rsvstu97

    If you can’t take it, don’t dish it.


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