EYE NEWSFLASH: New row erupts between portals after OnTheMarket ‘threatens to sue agent’

Relations between Zoopla and OnTheMarket deteriorated today with news that an agent planning to re-join Zoopla from OnTheMarket has not done so.

The matter came to light this morning, two days after Zoopla announced that Henry Adams, with 15 offices in West Sussex, Hampshire and Surrey was leaving OTM to rejoin it. EYE carried the story yesterday.

This morning, an OTM spokesperson released this statement: “We noted media coverage on 15 November 2017 that Henry Adams had signed an agreement with Zoopla to list all of its properties on its websites.

“As at 16 November 2017, Henry Adams is not listing its properties on any of the ZPG websites.

“The firm continues to list its properties at OTM in accordance with its current listing agreement and remains a valued member.”

At lunchtime, Zoopla hit back with a statement saying: “Henry Adams voluntarily re-joined ZPG but has subsequently been threatened with legal action by OTM for doing so.

“It is an unfortunate state of affairs for OTM that the only way they can retain their customers is by threatening to sue them and preventing them from maximising their opportunities.”

Today’s clash follows litigation between OTM and Connells’ brand Gascoigne Halman. OTM won the courtroom battle as to the legality of its ‘one other portal’ rule.



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  1. Chris Wood

    Shots fired. Wait out.

    1. digitalfix

      I think you’ll find it’s ‘Contact.  Wait out’.

      1. Chris Wood

        You’re right, but was using a phrase I thought more people would understand than “contact”.

        What’s your top COD score hero or are you more of an air-soft warrior? 😉

        1. Robert May

          What is the correct military phrase for understanding the enemy before engaging with them?

          If an active service veteran says its shots fired, it’s shots fired, if they say it’s fuzzy wuzzies at 12 o’clock its that too.

          Best not correct someone who’s got the t shirt.


  2. jamesBee

    interesting that ZPG are now advising that contracts are meaningless…great unqualified legal advice

    and lets not forget they are the ones who hid behind an agent  with the last court battle , which they last !

  3. Curious george

    I thought it was only Purplebricks that done the bullying

  4. sah1966

    Perhaps by chance OTM have a notice period for agents to serve before changing portal…? Petty squabbling

  5. James Morris

    Sooner agents tell the portals to stuff it the better.

  6. fluter

    When is a contract not a contract?

  7. mark_one

    They probably had not signed the new 5 year lock in agreement which would have allowed them to go on all 3 portals and are being held to original agreement even though OTM has completely changed from that themselves. They would also have lost their original investment in OTM if they were Gold Members. Like me they will probably have to wait till January 2019 to leave and leave they will surely do now I expect.

  8. NewsBoy

    Nice to see Hoopla getting their knickers in a twist. If I were them I’d be fighting very hard to undermine OTM asap. Hoopla is allegedly worth 1£billion, but worth nothing if the agents decide they don’t need to load their properties on there.

  9. smile please

    Surely its not a problem?

    OTM are scrapping the one other portal rule once they do this ill-fated float.

    All H.A. are doing is saying they are going to advertise on Z once the rule is abolished.

    When will OTM chase up the agents who have not paid their subscriptions for almost a year? – I can name 6 agents who have not paid a penny and broken contracts yet OTM have not chased for the money.

    OTM is a joke, sooner it dies the better.

    1. GPL

      smile please

      Ian Springett told me at The Roadshow which I attended that the plan would be to write off debts/non-payers with the launch of the New Company.

      You can imagine my response?

      It’s a House of Cards!

  10. Pragmatic06

    I suspect that the reason that OTM haven’t chased non-paying agents is that they know full well that if they go to court, they could well lose for contractual and behavioural reasons.

    If they lose one case, just one case………a precedent could be set and then OTM could be blown out of the water.

    I am amazed that agents are still paying their monthly subscriptions, amazed.

    I am also amazed that OTM (Agents Mutual) have not yet had proceedings instigated against them for refunds for breach of contract. Or have they? The class action seems to have gone quiet.

    It will be very interesting to see if they get OTM away in the forthcoming IPO. Why would anyone and especially any institution buy shares?

    All in my humble, independent opinion, please do your own research.




  11. AnotherPlanet365

    It’s a shabby, grubby situation and reeks of desperation!

    New Brandname suggestion OTMBully.com

    I am disgusted to be locked/bullied/shackled/restrained by a company which demonstrates dictatorship traits which cannot be condoned in the 21st Century.

    Witness the way in which former AM/OTM Members are treated and ask yourself – why would you ever want to join this debacle.

    If I could turn back the clock I would dismiss Sprogett as a Cheap Charlatan Salesman who should have been collared and thrown back onto the gutter he crawled from!

  12. AnotherPlanet365

    Time to start verifying the number of Members leaving! 600/700 appears to be the figure from less than 3000 Members so more than 20% leaving.

    Come on OTM, as a Public Company…. apparently this millennium….. let’s have Full Disclosure of the Members actually leaving as surely potential investors must have a truthful portrayal of the investment you are selling!!!

    Give us the TRUTH OTM!!!

  13. 1stTimeBuyer

    Talk about people reading a headline and not thinking of the detail. “Henry Adams had signed an agreement with Zoopla”.  Tell me, when is the start date of that agreement?  Besides, there are a fair few agents already appearing on all three portals, and from what I’ve heard and read, mixed messages from OTM reps as to if they can now join a third portal or not, even if they haven’t signed a new agreement.  Get your act in order OTM and Mr S!  As a whole, not just when it suites you, your pocket and ego.  At this rate, I’d be pretty amazed if on the date of OTM IPO, it doesn’t send the strongest message that no one has faith.

  14. harry hood

    The OTM proposition weakens with every leaving agent. These leaving agents won’t be fooled again.


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