Hedge fund already backing two online agents takes major holding in Purplebricks

Toscafund has reaffirmed its confidence in online estate agents by acquiring over 3m shares in Purplebricks, to give it a stake of 5.64%.

The hedge fund is now the eighth largest shareholder in Purplebricks, whose share price has dropped since the announcement on May 7 that it is pulling out of Australia, is reviewing its US operation and that co-founder and CEO Michael Bruce has left.

Toscafund Asset Management made the announcement to the London Stock Exchange, reporting that the threshold was reached a week ago, on May 10. It now has 303,090,347 shares with voting rights.

Any holding before May 10 is unknown. Purplebricks’ main stakeholder is Woodford Investment Management.

Toscafund already backs both easyProperty and HouseSimple.

A long-term investor in easyProperty, it put £14m into the business in 2015. In 2017, it backed easyProperty’s reverse takeover by GPEA – owner of the Guild and Fine & Country. The move, which installed Jon Cooke as CEO of Eprop Services, was reported at the time to be worth £60m.

Toscafund Asset Management director Matthew Siebert has recently been appointed a director at Eprop Services.

Toscafund has also participated in funding rounds of £13m and £20m respectively for HouseSimple, heavily backed by  Carphone Warehouse founder Sir Charles Dunstone and his business partner Roger Taylor.

Both Toscafund and Dunstone have registered charges against HouseSimple.

Purplebricks’ shares closed yesterday at around 108p.

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84 Comments

  1. ArthurHouse02

    “A fool and their money……..”

    Report
    1. Michelle Lockwood

      You’re not very clever are you ArthurHouse02?

      Report
  2. JustPlainSavage04

    Ahh now I know where Cyberduck works!

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  3. surrey1

    How apt. Tosca is a tragic story.

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      Not as tragic as your YTD sales surrey1. 

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  4. Bless You

    They spelt it wrong. It’s the tosserFund .

     

     

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      Spoken like a true Estate Agent. Your fund must be brimming over

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      1. Property Pundit

        Ah, ladies & gentlemen, we have a new troll. Give them a warm welcome.

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  5. Bless You

    Wow if I had £14 million , I could set up 100 locations and be making a profit of 2 million. Money back in a few years.

    Why not write a cheque to Google AdWords now and miss out the middleman.

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      Are you ok? Do you need me to call you an ambulance? 

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  6. J1

    That explains the share price fluctuation

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  7. ARC

    Blimey that’s a whole lot of eggs in one basket, that appears to be on fire.

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      You clearly know nothing. Try not to speak until you learn how to present an informed argument

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  8. Sdaltaf101

    Sensible investment, buy the shares at a relatively  low price, sit back and watch them  fly north once they reveal their high street strategy.

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    1. smile please

      Ha ha ha, Sat in the dentist at the moment. Thank you for brightening my day with that chuckle.

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      1. Property Ear

        I bet the dentist will wipe the smile off yer face Smile please!

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        1. Michelle Lockwood

          His customers don’t have much to smile about so why should he.

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    2. Property Pundit

      Dear Investors

       

      Remember we said we were going to disrupt the estate agency sector by offering a #payanyway no frills sales package and you threw many tens if not hundreds of millions of pounds at us to do it? Well, it’s not quite worked out but someone (let’s call him Agent Sdaltaf101) has said that our brand is ideal for cracking the High Street Estate Agency sector so we now want to give this a go. Any chance we could have, say, another £100m? We’re really confident it will work this time, in fact, we’re going to be sooooo good we’ll drive everyone else off the High Street and have it all to ourselves. Genius, I’m sure you’ll agree.

      Anyhows, if you could get the ‘investment’ sorted ASAP (we’re running out of money), we would really appreciate it.

       

      Yours faithfully

       

      Those still left at the company (this maybe subject to change depending when you read this pitch)’

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      1. Michelle Lockwood

        Keep taking the pills property pundit; your treatment isn’t working. How’s your YTD sales?

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    3. Bigbee73

      It’s very obviously RQ and given his acronym of Some day all lies turn against folk 101, i think its very good advice, not!

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      1. Sdaltaf101

        Can you translate into English?

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      2. Michelle Lockwood

        olet idiootti

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    4. Sdaltaf101

      The business model is evolving very much like Amazon who also started as a disrupter (selling books) by pumping millions into a sector to fracture the main competitors, the likes of  CWD are past redemption so the battle will now continue on the high street with their hub model picking the low lying fruit from the old boys who think 9 to 5 is a working day. They will then achieve national domination and the prices will increase along with their service offerings and my shares.

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      1. Ostrich17

        I don’t recall Amazon attempting a complete u-turn and opening on the High Street.

        Their backers would have laughed at them, had they tried.

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        1. Michelle Lockwood

          Your head still in the sand is it Ostrich17?

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          1. Ostrich17

            That’s an urban myth Michelle – Ostriches don’t actually do that outside the nesting season, when they are simply turning their eggs.
             
              Have you become bored trolling EA Today – or have they barred you?

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      2. Property Pundit

        There’s a psych ward missing a patient.

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        1. Michelle Lockwood

          Oh no, is the bed next yours empty again Property Pundit? Can’t really blame them having to listen to you rant every night

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          1. Property Pundit

            Seek treatment.

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      3. ARC

        I think you’ll find that’s what Connells thought they would achieve with Hatched, that went well!

         

         

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      4. JustPlainSavage04

        you really are deluded, such a shame sdaltaf, seems you have been brainwashed.

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        1. Michelle Lockwood

          Justplainstupid04 
          olet idiootti

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      5. htsnom79

        Somebody confiscate this dix keyboard.

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    5. Sdaltaf101

      PB will enter the high street with a hub concept offering a wide range of services with numerous payment options to cater to all, they have established a recognised brand which has been achieved by advertising so to maintain brand awareness and reinforce the customers trust they will inevitable enter the high street.
       
      The new guns are coming over the hill and the pipe and slippers brigade are the low lying fruit who attempt to justify taking a percentage of a clients property for advertising on Rightmove and passing on messages….. Thatcher has long gone and her estate agent experiment is about to follow being replaced with the new boys in town offering a fair price model and not acting like scrooge rubbing his hands selling free valuations and taking a percentage of your property.
       
      Don’t forget you should be working for your clients an not venting venom through those delicate little fingers, the truth hurts but lies hurt more…. today you hear the truth!
       
      Lets hold hands, dip our heads and pray at the Purple Brick.
       

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      1. Ostrich17

        “PB will enter the high street with a hub concept”

        What has happened to Kenny and the rest of the Bruce’s team – are they going to lead this major re-positioning or do we have to wait until the management cull is over ?

        Only 2 weeks ago you said:-

        “– Yes the management appear to have the full support but i’m not on the board so this is only my opinion,”

        Looks like your “new guns coming over the hill” had a bit of a set-back.

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      2. ARC

        You see you’ve ruined it for me because i thought you were serious but that is far too provocative to be the work of someone who has an understanding of the industry and a rational belief that PB may yet work out. Just looking for a reaction which is a shame.

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      3. PeeBee

        Okay… it’s time to stop pussyfooting around – and engage the Borg.
         
        According to Prophet’n’Loss, traditional Estate Agents are about to be replaced by
         
        “…the new boys in town offering a fair price model…”.
         
        So come on then, o seer of the future – what, precisely, is ‘fair’ about charging the same Fee to:
         
        a) the owner of a £5million home to that of a home 150x less expensive?, or
         
        b) the owner of a property that doesn’t sell to that of one that does?  

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        1. ALOnline

          To answer your question,

          All customers, regardless of a sale or the price of their property, receive the same service. In the most minimal terms, they pay a fixed fee for their property to be marketed.

          The product that online agents offer is equal not proportionate.

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          1. PeeBee

            ALOnline

            “All customers, regardless of a sale or the price of their property, receive the same service.”

            Sorry – no they don’t.  They can’t.

            “In the most minimal terms, they pay a fixed fee for their property to be marketed.”

            Sorry – no they don’t.  Sod your ‘in the most minimal terms’ f*ckwittery (credit: Jonnie) – homeowners instruct PB (also read ‘any other NSPR Agent’) having been force-fed the line

            “Sell with Purplebricks for a fair fixed fee.” 

            SELL.  Not “market”.  For a large percentage of PB customers, however, it seems that the difference between expectation and reality equals disappointment…

            …and a grand or so chuffed up against the wall for you seem happy to write off as “their property to be marketed“.

            Thanks for having a go, though.  I’ve seen worse efforts.

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            1. Michelle Lockwood

              Peebee sets the standards for bad efforts

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        2. Sdaltaf101

          Great question PeeBee and I may say the most sensible question to-date.
           
          Firstly, we live in a Capitalism society so the open market has control, if the consumer is prepared to pay for the goods or services and providing the revenue generated is greater than the costs then the business will succeed, this is the basic fundamental building blocks of an open democratic society and the underpinning of our economy.
           
          Socialism is the opposite because it is governed by the state who dictates what is on offer rather than the business, if we consider how the Estate Agency has evolved since Thatcher you can clearly see the market does not reflect a capitalism market (until recently with the Hybrid model) but has maintained a model of control similar to a socialistic model where those who have control over the market dictate the offerings to the market. That can clearly be demonstrated with the percentage of asset model which has remained over the past 40+years
           
           
          The Hybrid model is flawed in many ways but they offer an alternative based on service driven by price which is comparable to the work done and does not look for a percentage of the homeowners asset. In your example you quote an asset valued at £5million so I presume you would like a minimum of !% + vat to advertise, so you would like £50k +vat to take pictures and pass on messages………………really?
           
           
          Do you honestly believe you offer value for money when your fees are based on percentages of assets and not the work undertaken to do the work?
          Fair……what has fair got to do with business, you get paid for work you do, and not for what you are selling, the work to sell a £5million house in an open market certainly doesn’t warrant a fee of £50k or am I missing something?
           
          You are working within a socialistic business model which is why the hybrid model will continue to invest and evolve and it is inevitable the —“lets have a percentage of your property” model —–is DOOMED and replaced with realistic fees for work which has been undertaken.
           
           
          Lets hold hands, bow our heads and pray to the Purple Brick
           
          The future is capitalism and the colour is Purple
           

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          1. ARC

            There are not many people looking to spend £5 million on a house so in order to find one it is going to involve a bit more work than a house at 150k where you can’t walk down the street for bumping in to potential buyers. Hence the difference in fee.

            As a career estate agent I have been called many but never a socialist and that is by far the worst of the lot.

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            1. Sdaltaf101

              I said the percentage on asset model is based on a socialist business model.
               
              And really you can go out and find a buyer for a £50million property.
               
              That’s truly unbelievable when you consider the process of selling a £150k property compared to £50million is exactly the same, when the phone rings you answer it and arrange viewings and pass on messages after taking pictures and writing descriptions, albeit there will be additional attention given to the wealthy client but surely not £48,500.00 worth? (based on 1% exc. vat)
               
              That’s why the Hybrids will dominate this sector and the old percentage of asset will be a thing of the past because homeowners will pick and chose what services they would like, at the end of the day there is only one buyer and one seller and it is the seller who accepts the offer in an open market, if you want a percentage of the asset then buy the property and then sell on for a profit, otherwise charge a fair fee for the work you undertake.
               
               

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              1. Woodentop

                95% of the consumer market say you are talking tosh.

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            2. Michelle Lockwood

              How would you sell s £5m house then ARC? Are you more proactive? Do you stay open 24/7 to insure you don’t miss your notonthemarket.com leads? Why don’t you tell us what 2% of £5,000,000 buys me

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          2. Woodentop

            Socialism is the opposite because it is governed by the state who dictates what is on offer rather than the business, if we consider how the Estate Agency has evolved since Thatcher you can clearly see the market does not reflect a capitalism market (until recently with the Hybrid model) but has maintained a model of control similar to a socialistic model where those who have control over the market dictate the offerings to the market. That can clearly be demonstrated with the percentage of asset model which has remained over the past 40+years.
             
            Sounds impressive … are you sniffing something? Pray tell why did the market evolve to commission based on sold value. Started long before Thatcher who you seem to have firmly inbedded in your brain as the anti-Christ.

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        3. Michelle Lockwood

          If you don’t get it by now Peebrain, you never will

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      4. Malcolm Egerton

        Can you tell us why PB are still using two review sites (Trustpilot and Feefo)?

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        1. Michelle Lockwood

          Why shouldn’t they Malcolm? My organisation uses 4

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          1. Malcolm Egerton

            Why?

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      5. Property Poke In The Eye

        They not entering any High Street, they will get tortured by the proper agents.   Bring it on we say!!

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  9. Property Ear

    An idiotic investment. PB are going down the pan, taking all these numbskulls money with them. This isn’t a traditional agents snide comment, it was obvious it couldn’t work at the outset and now the end is nigh.

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    1. Property Ear

      I’ll bet the dentist will wipe the smile off yer face Smile please!

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    2. Michelle Lockwood

      This is what your High Street competitors have been telling your customers for years Property Ear. But you’re still lingering

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  10. Mark Walker 2

    “A long-term investor in easyProperty, it put £14m into the business in 2015”

    “it put £14m into the business in 2015”

    “£14m”

    “easyProperty,”

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      Sorry, what’s your point?

      Report
  11. Gareth Styles MD Grants Independent

    Speechless.

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    1. Michelle Lockwood

      You really shouldn’t have bothered 

      Report
  12. AgentQ73

    Would be interesting to know who sold them and for how much for ?

     

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    1. PeeBee

      Could have been anybody – up to 303,090,347 ‘anybody’s, in reality.
       
      There were three separate transactions of over 1000000 shares that day – so it appears they bought them in lumps.
       
      From what I can see, I would suggest they’ve lost a few quid on the deal already.

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      1. Lil Bandit

        PeeBee the stock broker…. Pathetic

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        1. PeeBee

          Haven’t you learned that the best place for you is to stay under that rock?
           
          Pathetic right back atcha.

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      2. Michelle Lockwood

        Who sold them??? Everyone knows shares are delivered by the same stork that dropped you on your head

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    2. Woodentop

      Someone who came to their senses and the light was getting dimmer. 

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      1. Michelle Lockwood

        Another flat-earther?

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  13. SLF

    It always amuses me when a negotiator sitting at their desk probably staring out the office window thinks they know better than these very successful and astute investors.

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    1. Property Pundit

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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      1. Michelle Lockwood

        Property pungent is off again. So what proportion of your property have you sold YTD?

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        1. Property Pundit

          Hey cat-lady, I’m not an agent.

          Report
    2. htsnom79

      Lol, try listening to the entertaining daily

      ” Bearcast” podcast by tom winnifrith to have a sense of just how successful and astute these investors are, canon fodder more like.

      Report
    3. Woodentop

      probably staring out the office window.  
       
      I wonder if they had seen you and were thinking  ………

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    4. AgentQ73

      For every buyer there is a seller, do you not think the sellers could be successful and astute investors who have seen the writing on the wall ?

      Report
  14. cyber_truth

    Surprised a fund of this size would make such a stupid investment decision. How did they not look at Purplebricks fundamentals, burn rate, mass exodus of LPEs and employees and more. The only ones that made money were the founders (infamous Bruce brothers) and initial UK executive team who ALL CASHED IN BEFORE THE STOCK DROPPED like a rock. Should be investigated.  They used everyone for their personal gain and continue to flaunt their wealth with new luxury cars, horses, houses, jewelry, and more! Investors are the fools and we should have thought of this scam!

    Report
  15. s71

    Not a single comment from the DUCK.

    Must be laying an egg!!!

    Report
    1. Woodentop

      Licking his wounds, the markets closed with a further drop in share price to 104p and the Duck was the man that told us all things rosey investing in PB shares was good advice and the end of estate agents. We are still here and the on-liners have either gone bust or are going bust. He’s probably back in the pub offering other words of wisdom.

      Report
  16. Mothers Ruin

    Ignoring the vitriol in this thread and trying to take a balanced view. Scratching my head here – how can a Company who has made a name for themselves as an online agent, albeit not a great deal of money move in to the High Street without a massive increase in client fees? Surely their mission would be to make good profits online and see off the remaining onliners.

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  17. Property Pundit

    Morning, has Michelle Lockwood sobered up yet or does she just keep going? Asking for a friend.

    Report
  18. PeeBee

    LAYDEEZ AND GENTLEMENN…

    Please give a hearty EYE welcome to our latest “contributor” –

    the enigmatic… vitriolic… bunny-boiler wannabe…

    ‘Michelle Lockwood’.

    Recently out of intensive training (undertaken scribbling complete and utter cobblers on the bog door down the other pub) ‘she’ has obviously decided that ‘she’ is ready to come onto EYE and play to a wider audience.

    Yet another disciple of the NSPR Portal Listing Facilitator community, it seems.

    Bless ‘her’.

    The delusion is such that ‘she’ clearly thinks that chucking a few one-line insults into a room like lit bangers is going to have a sea-change effect on those the venom is spat at and those reading it.

    Come on then, ‘Michelle Lockwood’…

    Bring.

    It.

    On.

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    1. Property Pundit

      Looking forward to more incoherent ramblings next week.

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    2. Quags

      I’ve just read through this thread aghast at her obvious trolling, clearly nothing better to do. Maybe this is Dom’s new secret identity?

      Someone clearly had to much Rose wine that evening….

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  19. GPL

     

    Michelle?

    When did you start experiencing these delusional episodes…..?

    Were you born a Troll or did you grow up aspiring to be a Troll?

    If we flip open the top of your head …..is it full of Little Trolls furiously working away to keep you moving/thinking …….or is it a vast empty space where you can hear nothing but your own thoughts?

    Go on Trollelle, enlighten us with your Troll Wisdom….

     

     

    Report
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