EYE NEWSFLASH: Emoov is NOT in administration and it’s business as usual, says Quirk

This morning Emoov boss Russell Quirk emphatically denied rumours that the business is in administration.

He told EYE: “That is untrue. It is a matter of fact that this is not the case.

“I am aware that there are all sorts of rumours and conjecture flying around but it is very much business as usual and, as is no secret, we are continuing to try and find a buyer.

“Are there multiple conversations going on? Yes there are. Are these challenging times? Yes they are.”

Yesterday Quirk addressed staff face to face at the Emoov offices in central London, plus some local property experts remotely.

Emoov staff also received a rallying call in the form of an email from  Jack Malnick, Emoov’s national sales manager, who took up the post in January this year.

It says: “Just a quick note on what was a very difficult meeting, in a very tough time for everyone involved.

“I know it’s not been easy up until now, and next week will be much the same, particularly those paying for travel etc but I just wanted to reiterate something – if we don’t show up for work, don’t answer the phones, have the tough conversations, book viewings and valuations (and go to the ones we book) then we don’t have a business, we won’t get bought and we won’t get paid.

“The only way of us all getting get paid Emoov surviving is if we all show up this weekend and Monday and the rest of next week, and do what we are here to do.  I appreciate it might be a lot to ask but collectively we are responsible for keeping this business intact, and every single person that doesn’t work puts us more at risk.

“There are options out there, it’s up to us to ensure we do all we can to try and help get it across the line by keeping us in business and money in everyone’s bank accounts for the incredible effort and hard work every single one of you has put in.

“Please come in, please keep working and let’s see what next Friday looks like when we get there – it’s our best chance.”

This morning Quirk told EYE that components of the Emoov business are very valuable.

He said: “We have spent £7m on excellent technology. It would probably take someone two years and £10m to build something similar. Our technology could be integrated into an existing business – and could transform the fortunes of a traditional estate agency.

“We also have £2.5m worth of unspent Channel 4 time, which is transferable, plus £1m of space in the Express and Mirror.

“We paid £3m for Urban, which was a steal. It is bringing in revenues of £40,000 a month.

“We also have excellent search engine optimisation – in Google searches, we come up at the top, ahead of Yopa and way ahead of Purplebricks.

“Add all these up and there is undoubtedly excellent value in the business.”

Acknowledging that he has another difficult week ahead, Quirk emphasised: “My absolute focus is the staff, customers and of course the creditors and shareholders.”

Quirk was asked whether Emoov itself would continue. He said: “God I hope so.

“It is tragic that we had ten years of building the business, and then just five months after the merger with Tepilo, it has come to this.”

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40 Comments

  1. GeorgeHammond78

    Would suggest he looks up the meaning of the word ‘value’; his current interpretation would suggest he’s either dyslexic or deluded!

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  2. ArthurHouse02

    Its telling that when talking about the valuable components of Emoov, no where, not anywhere does he mention the staff. Russell yet again misses the point of what it takes to run a successful business and it shows.

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    1. Ostrich17

      Sounds like the staff have got the measure of Russell though.

       

       

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  3. 40yearvetran08

    “We paid £3m for Urban, which was a steal. It is bringing in revenues of £40,000 a month”

    How is £3m a steal? in the eyes of the deluded investor who is told they can value a business at ridiculous multiples perhaps it looks cheap but on £40k per month income what is the profit? the reality is it is probably worth 1 to 2 times turnover if that. Whenever i have looked at selling a profitable business I would have been ecstatic to be offered 2x turnover but it is usually around 1x if you are lucky – 6.25 times turnover is insanity

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    1. Dezza25

      The only ones with a good deal was urban getting £3m for their business. Most large lettings agents in most towns do £40k a month. Mine included. Madness

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  4. Millicent Bystander

    Quirk turns to Jedi mind tricks as a last, last resort. “These are not the droids you are looking for” (Emoov isn’t f@cked) All stormtroopers should return to the Death Star, pretty please, to man the pumps and ensure I can salvage what I can out of the scrap metal.

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    1. JVSOZ

      Priceless comment, Millicent Bystander!

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  5. M Arlington

    Reminds me of the band playing on whilst the Titanic was sinking.

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  6. Shaun77

    Surely they should pay the staff whether they work or not. I thought their model was all about getting paid regardless of results???

     

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  7. AgentQ73

    Using the phrase “the only way of us all getting paid” is not going to inspire any confidence. Could be a grim Xmas for Emoov employees.

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  8. AgencyInsider

    Mr. Praline: I’ll tell you what’s wrong with it, my lad. ‘E’s dead, that’s what’s wrong with it!

    Owner: No, no, ‘e’s uh,…he’s resting.

    Mr. Praline: Look, matey, I know a dead parrot when I see one, and I’m looking at one right now.

    Owner: No no he’s not dead, he’s, he’s restin’! Remarkable bird, the Norwegian Blue, idn’it, ay? Beautiful plumage!

    Mr. Praline: The plumage don’t enter into it. It’s stone dead.

    Owner: Nononono, no, no! ‘E’s resting!

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  9. Robert May

    Surely the cash and advertising credits are there to fulfil the contractual obligations to the existing clients and before taking on additional obligations it should be established there will be enough cash and credit to fulfil  those obligations too.

    Given the  vast sums invested, loaned, crowdfunded and input into various similar organisations it’s reasonably easy to conclude  that  passive intermediary, internet listing firms do not charge enough fee to cover their trading costs and that without  continued and ongoing funding rounds it becomes less and less likely that such firms can take on additional listings without  running the risk of the cash and credits running out before the properties are sold.

    Any listing rep attempting to take on an instruction in the  desperate circumstances described above really should given serious consideration to their obligations to the client, themselves,  their employer and what is the right and proper thing to do.

    Taking an instruction ‘no sale no fee’ offers some protection to the client but any hint of taking a fee to list in the knowledge there might not be enough in the pot to promote the property until sold would be indefensible.

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    1. Room101

      Check-mate.

      Damned if you do and damned if you don’t pretend it’s business as usual.

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    2. Millicent Bystander

      You raise a valid point given the Emoov business model. Is Russell knowingly trading insolvent or would it be deemed as wrongful trading if Emoov are taking clients money knowing full well they could be wound up soon and not deliver the service they sold (I know, I know..whether they do anyway could be argued). 

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  10. Property Poke In The Eye

    Emoov is going down.   
     
    Just a matter of time. It will go into administration by end of January.  That’s my prediction.

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    1. Millicent Bystander

      While I admire your optimism I think January is a tad unrealistic.

      I think that if they can make payroll this month it will be an achievement.

      My money is on them being in administration before the end of the year.

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  11. JVSOZ

    Kenny and Michael should rescue all the poor vendors Free of charge, and give a few LPE’s a job.

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  12. Mike Hunt

    Starting to believe some people get seriously aroused whenever they read bad news about an online agent.

    This is still a relatively new branch of the industry and there are always going to be hiccups along the way.

    Bunch of dinosaurs stuck in their ways without a thought for the people trying something new in this world.

     

     

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    1. AgentQ73

      I think you need to look at Mr Quirks comments in the industry to understand the schadenfruede. I think most  people will feel genuinely concerned for the staff but not the company or it’s leaders

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    2. PeeBee

      Oh, Mr Hunt…
       
      …you REALLY don’t ‘get’ it – do you?
       
      And thereby lies the problem.

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  13. PeeBee

    “…is very much business as usual….”

    Sorry to point out the painfully obviois, Mr Quirk… but no it bl00dy well isn’t.

    How can it be?  Unless, that is, offering people a service for which they are expected to stump up for in advance, with no guarantee that who you are paying will even be in existence in a week… a month…and that what you have paid you at least have a coins’ toss of a chance that you might get to see something for it, is “what the average person could be reasonably expected to accept as being business as usual”, that is…

    …which somehow I sincerely doubt.

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  14. GPL

     
     
    Russell Quirk? …….quite simply Delusional!
     
    Emoov staff? …..you genuinely have my sympathy, no one wants to be out of a job, especially when your fate is outwith your control.
     
    Hang your head in shame Russell… you built it with other peoples money   …..then you broke it!
     
     

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  15. GPL

    He said: “We have spent £7m on excellent technology. It would probably take someone two years and £10m to build something similar. Our technology could be integrated into an existing business – and could transform the fortunes of a traditional estate agency.
    “We also have £2.5m worth of unspent Channel 4 time, which is transferable, plus £1m of space in the Express and Mirror.
    “We paid £3m for Urban, which was a steal. It is bringing in revenues of £40,000 a month.
    “We also have excellent search engine optimisation – in Google searches, we come up at the top, ahead of Yopa and way ahead of Purplebricks.
    “Add all these up and there is undoubtedly excellent value in the business.”
    Acknowledging that he has another difficult week ahead, Quirk emphasised: “My absolute focus is the staff, customers and of course the creditors and shareholders.”
    Quirk was asked whether Emoov itself would continue. He said: “God I hope so.
    “It is tragic that we had ten years of building the business, and then just five months after the merger with Tepilo, it has come to this.”
     

    Russell, reading all of your aforementioned comments the single question that is screaming silently from all the rooftops is….. “Why is your business on its knees then?”

     

     

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  16. Tealeaf

    There seems to be many distasteful human beings here.

    businesses fail from time to time and everyone else learns from the failings.

    Right now it does not matter who’s fault it is, there are staff that need paying, that are still working without knowing if they will get paid.

    The same staff are probably reading your horrible comments.

    Grow up will you and have some respect.

    I wish you all the best Emoov and I hope you get something over the line.

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    1. JVSOZ

      Tealeaf,

      You should change your name to snowflake.

      These folk are now trained disrupter agents and should be grateful for their experience and move on.

      At the very least they’ve learnt what not to do!

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    2. Robert May

      If you had followed this story in detail and full from the beginning you would not be saying that. For the past 5 years Mr Quirk has been confidently saying how he is  going to disrupt estate agency and once boasted  how he  was happy to take investment from his friends, family and even his own daughter to fund that disruption.  
       
      Mr Quirk was very happy to dish it out but was never happy to be on the receiving end of anyone who stands up to what he is actually doing. Now this is all coming to it’s inevitable conclusion; no business can spend more than it earns and expect investors to fund the shortfall forever, it is natural those people who have consistently  highlighted the counter to the claims  being fabricated and made will continue to provide a balance to what is now full and desperate denial of the situation he has landed everyone in.  
       
      It is desperately sad for all those who put their faith, savings, pocket money,  careers to supporting Mr Quirk’s vision but there is a simple fact that cannot be ignored  a service industry cannot be centralised and disrupted by cost savings when the cost savings do not come  anywhere near covering what clients are missing out on.  
       
      It is Purplebricks who have killed Emoov; their high profile investors have deeper pockets than Emoov’s but Emoov’s investors are obviously far smarter and quicker to learn.  Estate agency  isn’t going to be long term disrupted by this particular business model and funding that disruption really can’t be justified. The people who have stood up to the disruptors are  decent people who have invested time, resource and reputation to defend the industry  the likes of Quirk and Bruce  have tried desperately to break.  They are far from distasteful, they are decent and  they are honest.

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    3. rsvstu97

      People get what they deserve. They didn’t think about the agents struggling to pay their staff as a result of this ‘disruption’ and why should they. This is business not charity or something warm and cuddly. In a dog eat dog world the top dog wins and many fail. Emoov will be one of the failures. 

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  17. Agent5496

    Mr Quirk….when I started out in agency some 30+ years ago an old boy said to me ‘talk is cheap, money buys houses.

    Remind us again about you wanting to buy Countrywide?

     

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  18. smile please

    Writing is on the wall.gone by Christmas, early present to all good full service agents.

     

    Why would anyone buy them? They have shown the business model is not viable unless you continually pump millions of your own (or other peoples) cash into it.

     

    Unlike others here, I have absolutely no sympathy for the employees. You look on social media, LinkedIn, even on this site. You see them come out and spurt nonsense how amazing they and the company are. Which we all know is BS

     

    Can’t wait for this pathetic joke of an estate agency to be no more.

     

    On a side not any employees should read between the lines, they have no money to pay you!!!

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    1. Robert May

      They are legally obliged to have enough cash to cover their contingent liabilities;  that’s things like wages and redundancy payments.

      If the thing has spiralled so quickly out of control that there is no money any attempt to trade out of the position with little hope of success will simply exacerbate matters.

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  19. rsvstu97

    It says: “Just a quick note on what was a very difficult meeting, in a very tough time for everyone involved.
     
    “I know it’s not been easy up until now, and next week will be much the same, particularly those paying for travel etc but I just wanted to reiterate something – if we don’t show up for work, don’t answer the phones, have the tough conversations, book viewings and valuations (and go to the ones we book) then we don’t have a business, we won’t get bought and we won’t get paid.
     
    “The only way of us all getting get paid Emoov surviving is if we all show up this weekend and Monday and the rest of next week, and do what we are here to do.  I appreciate it might be a lot to ask but collectively we are responsible for keeping this business intact, and every single person that doesn’t work puts us more at risk.
     
    “There are options out there, it’s up to us to ensure we do all we can to try and help get it across the line by keeping us in business and money in everyone’s bank accounts for the incredible effort and hard work every single one of you has put in.
     
    “Please come in, please keep working and let’s see what next Friday looks like when we get there – it’s our best chance.”
    High risk email to send out knowing it would end up in the public domain. Perhaps a personal phone call would have been more effective, can’t have that many calls to make. Sounds pretty terminal to me. Goes to show that any model based on cheap fees and VOLUME fails when the market tightens. It doesn’t matter if you are a so-called online agent or a high street agent, cheap fees requires volume. This is what happens when there is a race to the bottom.

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  20. Keyser Söze

    “Estate agents are revolting…”

    ”On average traditional estate agents charge £3,008 commission…this is daylight robbery…”

    Numerous aggressive comments regarding Countrywide (who remembers the “Is this their Blockbuster moment?” piece?) during their demise. You could write a book on all of the other swipes at traditional estate agents.

    It’s hard to have much sympathy if you’ve followed their story since day 1. Have a look at Emoov and Tepilo’s latest Trustpilot reviews. I have sympathy for those individuals who have forked out a lot of money and may never see anything for it. Let’s not even start on the recent Crowdcube investors who were led to believe that they were investing prior to an IPO in 2019!

    Budget online listers have done more damage to the industry as a whole and caused huge fee erosion. High street agents have been forced to reduce fees down and cut their cloth according by reducing overheads to keep going. Many have been forced to close their doors (all with staff losing their jobs).

    Emoov return to the city with their begging bowl but this time it’s been returned empty.

    Hopefully estate agents will now start feeling more confident and begin raising fees so that the industry can stablislise again.

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  21. calledit

    Jack Malnick’s email sounds like someone rallying the troops to get the school fundraising efforts off the ground  no concept to the gravity of the situation.

    “Tough for those paying for travel…lets just keep going and see what next week brings…..go to the viewings you book”  FFS this is people’s livelihoods and if they should all leave now and get a job while they can and pay for their family’s Christmas. Also says much for their organisation that turning up for viewings seems to be an issue.

    As for Quirk, where’s the receipt for this £7m IT system – I didn’t know he was an IT Specialist who can claim that a similar system would cost £10 m and take 2 years???

    He paid £3m for Urban and brings in revenues of £40k a month, really? he has grossly overpaid for this – Northern Shell had a good look under the bonnet – we know where that ended.

    In addition to the jobs lost at Emoov think of the lost revenue, lost jobs from the full service agencies  and the lowering of fees to contend with the online ‘disruptors’ and their investor money.

     

     

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  22. Hillofwad71

    The complaints are mounting up but perhaps fobbing off customers with “technical  issues” is not the answer

    https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/tepilo.com

    They are entering dangerous waters taking money off  vendors when they can’t  pay their  agents petrol expenses

    Despite hitting an iceberg its seems nothing can get in Quirk ‘s  way as he trips over himself to wax lyrical about some property  related topic  or another . He certainly has some neck .Even last week desperate to get some headphones on .You would have thought he would be busy enough back at the ranch trying to sort the financial mess out

    https://twitter.com/russellquirk/status/1065896819849338880

     

     

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  23. SLF

    What is it about our industry and the contributors on here that makes so many of you revel in a competitors demise. Bit sad really.

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    1. ALOnline

      It’s funny because it isn’t necessarily good news for anyone that this is happening.

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  24. Hillofwad71

    Well SLF.it was only a few months ago that Quirk was bandying around a valuation of £100m  and now the poor agents are having to foot their own petrol expenses Clients facing the possibility of their fees paid upfront going west.Investors enticed on Crowdcube possibly losing money  is good news for the profession -think again

    Furthermore a CEO who is a self-appointed ambassador for the profession who only last week when his empire was crumbling all he could think about was getting a slot  on Wake up for Money  !!!

    There might be more sympathy if he spent more time managing his business rather than an endless quest  for self-promotion

    His Twitter account has him with headphones on which says it all

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  25. jeremy1960

    As usual I’m confused, are this the lot that walk around with a sheep under their arm?

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    1. Hillofwad71

      I doubt that you are the only one !That just goes to show how good the branding  was!

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  26. ALOnline

    If about nothing else, Mr Quirk is fibbing about the search engine optimisation.

     

    Searching “Estate Agent” returns results of:

     

    (ad) Yopa

    (ad) PB

    Connells

    Spencers

    Rightmove

    Spencers

    Castles

    Prime Location

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