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New emoov COO hits back at Russell Quirk

The chief operating officer of emoov has responded to ex-CEO Russell Quirk by arguing that online estate agencies haven’t realised their potential and will take market share from the traditional players.

Last week ex-emoov boss Quirk argued on a podcast with Mark Worrall that the low-fee model “doesn’t work”.

Meanwhile he predicted that Purplebricks will be the only hybrid agency left standing, and it will only achieve 10% of the market share.

Naveen Jaspal is chief operating officer at both emoov and Mashroom, a property lettings platform which bought the ailing ‘hybrid’ agent in January 2019.

She said: “emoov going into administration was an individual failure rather than a failure of the online market.

“I personally believe the online market/hybrid agents will eat into the proportions of the high street marketplace.

“Five or 10 years ago you’d go to restaurants to eat your food and today you have Deliveroo and it’s a natural thing: We know the world is changing, we know that consumer behaviour is changing, we know that the estate agency sector is developing.

“Do I believe that online markets have released their potential? No, they are at the beginning stages of influencing the market and taking market share.”

Jaspal has a varied estate agency background, having worked for Countrywide, Purplebricks and Yopa.

She said the company has been “consciously quiet” since the emoov acquisition was completed, in order to analyse how the business should be run.

Previously she added that it was confused as to what it was, whether it was high street or online.

The company has now been rebranded – and is now looking to market itself again.

Jaspal added: “What we have seen is a lot of the estate agencies are spending millions of pounds a month on marketing. Actually that is not sustainable.

“We are looking to social media advertising, directly to the consumer.

“We are not in the TV advertising space but we have and will be advertising at the Barbarian Fiji game at Twickenham on Saturday.”

The company is also offering a £100 Amazon gift voucher for anyone that refers someone else to emoov.

One major change is the estate agency will now allocate users with one account manager, who will manage the process from beginning to end, to make sure the process is joined up from the first phone call to the property sale.

The price of using emoov will remain at £895, though the company will allow customers to pay in small chunks rather than a hefty amount all in one go.

The rebranded company will refer people to mortgage services, as well as conveyancing firms via myhomemove, though neither will be an obligation for emoov’s users.

Jaspal said: “There’s a lot of press about online agents only having 5% of the marketplace.

“There are 15,000 estate agency businesses in the UK.

“If you weigh it up it’s not a bad starting point.”