Hybrid agent YOPA has raised £15m in a funding round led by the Daily Mail and General Trust – DMGT is the majority shareholder in Zoopla – alongside new investment from Savills’ investment arm, Grosvenor Hill Ventures. Private investors have also contributed.
In June last year, YOPA raised £16m in a funding round led by Savills, so that altogether YOPA has raised £31m in less than a year.
YOPA says it will use the money to fund further expansion, saying that its network of 75 ‘expert local estate agents’ across the UK will double by the end of this year, and grow its market share.
In the last 12 months, YOPA has expanded into Scotland and it recently appointed giffgaff founder Gav Thompson as marketing officer.
It claims to be one of the country’s “top three agents for successful property sales”.
YOPA currently charges £839, up from £780 at the start of last year, and claims that its sellers achieve over 98% of asking price. YOPA also says that on average, sellers save over £3,000 in fees, and that buyers are found in under 30 days.
Yesterday evening the YOPA site was quoting a charge to vendors of £1,399 in parts of London, and a high street agent fee of up to 3.5%. Add-ons such as viewings were being quoted at an extra £300, EPCs at £85, and Rightmove premium listings at an extra £99 “instead of the usual £250”.
YOPA, whose directors include Andrew and Alistair Barclay whose fathers own the Telegraph, was launched in 2015.
Daniel Attia, co-founder and CEO of YOPA, said: “After a strong first quarter of trading, we are delighted to have closed our Series B round of funding.
“Having DMGT lead this round is incredibly exciting and we are also pleased to continue our close relationship with Savills, who have reinvested and maintained their equity stake.
“Having two industry giants backing our vision is not only a testament to our model of estate agency, but to the team at YOPA who are the driving force behind the business.”
Paul Zwillenberg, CEO of DMGT, said: “DMGT has a history of profitable investment in the property sector, including a significant long-term stake in Zoopla Property Group, leading to the company’s successful IPO in 2014, and the Group’s own portfolio of property information businesses in the US and Europe.
“We have been impressed by YOPA, which has quickly established itself as a key player in a new market that has exciting growth potential, and look forward to seeing the progress of the team’s expansion plans.”
Research published in March by Jefferies found that YOPA has an 83.1% success rate, compared with Connells agreeing sales on 62.3% of its listings, Countrywide 60.2%, LSL 50.6% and Foxtons 48.8%. However, it had a portfolio of only 846 properties, compared for example with Purplebricks which had 10,170.