Connells Group this morning revealed a stunning 42% rise in pre-tax profits. Last year, the group made pre-tax profits of £104.2m, up from £73.4m in 3016.
Total income rose 9%, to £457.2m.
The results included a gain of £38.5m from the sale of shares in ZPG. Last year’s disposal followed a sale of Connells shares in Zoopla during 2016, worth £17m.
The group also announced increased market share during a falling housing market. With a 14.7% overall decline in transactions last year, Connells ssaid its own instructions were just 2% down, with sales down 3% and exchanges down 4%. It described this as a good result in a tougher market, and puts its market share at 6%, saying that last year it offered more houses for sale than any other agent in the UK.
Its lettings income was up 9%, and profits in this part of the business up 29%.
Connells Group CEO David Livesey said last year’s results were ‘a standout performance’.
He said: “Last year presented a number of challenges for the industry, but we thrive on challenge and, again, we proved our resilience and maintained our position as the most successful and profitable estate agency and property services group in the UK.
“With the level of expertise within our business, our diversity of disciplines and through a continued focus on providing the best service to our customers and clients, we have increased both our profits and our market share. This is a tremendous outcome.”
He said that Connells remains acquisitive and will be investing in new branch openings.
The group also said that 2018 has started positively with a sales pipeline up on this time a year ago, and a 25% increase in applicants.
Livesey said: “We will continue to grow our business and invest in our people – they are our most valuable differentiator and the reason for our success.
“In a highly competitive marketplace, our results speak volumes about the quality of service we offer customers – our people deserve all the credit for these exceptional results.”