Tuesday 15 December 2020 12:34 pm

Online estate agent Purplebricks expects to beat profit forecasts

Online estate agent Purplebricks said it will beat full year profit expectations due to a surge in demand during the coronavirus pandemic as homebuyers shifted to technology-led platforms. 

The figures

The company said there are “reasons to remain cautious on the economic outlook” but said it is confident that Ebitda for the full year will exceed the upper end of the current range of consensus of £10.6m.

Instructions were up eight per cent in the first half of the year, the AIM-listed company said this morning. 

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) soared 110 per cent to £8.4m in the six months to 31 October.

Total fee income was up six per cent to £49.1m, up from £46.3m.

However revenue was down six per cent and gross profit dropped one per cent.

Why it is interesting 

Purplebricks said there is “clear evidence” that consumers are beginning to shift towards apps and tech-based alternatives to traditional high street estate agents. 

It said its digital model enabled it to continue to serve customers during the first coronavirus lockdown due to its “virtual capabilities”.

What Purplebricks said

Purplebricks chief executive Vic Darvey said: “This continued momentum demonstrates the strength of our technology-led business model and our ability to adapt quickly to a changing market.

“I am proud of the way we responded to the COVID-19 crisis, which demonstrated our ability to deliver our improved virtual capabilities to our customers throughout the period.

“We made sure we looked after our people when things got tough, we adapted quickly to new ways of working, and we enhanced our technology to make it easier and safer for customers to do business with us.

“We are now emerging from the pandemic in a very strong competitive position.”