Billionaire founder of Easy-Jet, Sir Stelios Haji-Iannou, is going the equity crowdfunding route to finance his latest venture – online real estate startup EasyProperty. Sir Stelios has offered 1.5% ownership in the new company for a substantial £1 million. The offer, listed earlier today on Crowdcube, is scheduled to run for only two weeks. Sir Stelios has partnered on the venture with experienced real estate manager Robert Ellice who will be acting as CEO of EasyProperty.
EasyProperty will post your potential rental property for free on their web site. Once a new tenant is discovered the landlord pays a one time fee of £49.99. Listing agents may upgrade the service, for an additional fee, to syndicate the tenant search to other platforms such as Zoopla and RightMove. EasyProperty also provides a select offering of services for site users. These a la carte services each come with an additional fee. The UK estate agency industry is estimated at £6 billion today and easyProperty wants to enter and disrupt the established method of managing things.
EasyProperty describes their business as;
“[having] taken the traditional high street estate agent, stripped it down, and built it back up. Now we have something that performs better. Much better. By cutting away the dead-weight – the expensive high street shops, the tacky minis, and the rest of the unnecessary baggage – we’ve delivered a new generation of estate agent. One which isn’t constrained by things like locality, red tape or opening hours.”
The founders want to empower users to only pay for services they need – skipping the ones they do not need.
The site is expected to officially launch later this September. A report in the Telegraph states that over 10,000 properties have been pre-registered with the objective to lease 4 to 5 thousand homes a month by the end of the year. The company is also seeking an additional £6.5 million from investors outside the crowdfunding offer. This is on top of the £4.5 million already raised earlier this year.
The involvement of Greek-Cypriot multi-billionaire Sir Stelios has given the offer a bit of a celebrity glow. Sir Stelios is known for his easyJet group launched when he was 28 years in 1995. EasyProperty will operate under the EasyGroup umbrella of companies.
“I’ve been in the property market since I was 16 years old. As a much wiser – and much greyer – man, I now have the privilege of teaming up with Stelios, the founder of easyJet.”
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