Rebel shareholders at Purplebricks want the current chairman to be replaced by industry veteran Harry Hill.
Lecram Holdings Limited - which has just over five per cent of the troubled agency’s shares - has written to the company to requisition a General Meeting where it will propose that existing chairman Paul Pindar is replaced by Hill, founder of the Countrywide estate agency chain and of Rightmove.
Purplebricks has three weeks to respond to the letter, which was sent on Tuesday and has to hold the GM within another four weeks.
Lecram first contacted Pindar in July requesting that he step down as Chairman. However he has thus far refused, which has led to the GM being requisitioned.
In the letter to shareholders supporting the requisition, Adam C Smith of Lecram, highlighted the continued loss of investors’ money at Purplebricks, adding: “I believe strongly that a new Chairman is required now to restore the Company’s credibility with all its stakeholders and to support its executive management team through the challenges which they will face in the medium term.”
Hill spent 20 years building up Countrywide, which was sold for £1bn, and in his time there helped found Rightmove, which now has a market value of over £4bn.
Smith adds: “Harry is an extremely experienced director with an intimate understanding of the UK property market. He has an excellent and relevant track record of performance which is exactly what Purplebricks needs right now.”
Hill himself comments: “There is a fantastic opportunity for Purplebricks to turn itself around and be a real force in the estate agency business. Unfortunately much of the goodwill, and a large amount of shareholders’ money, has been squandered in recent years and that’s why I believe that by being on the Board, my extensive experience in estate agency and proptech can contribute towards Purplebricks getting back on track, stemming the cash burn and finally delivering for investors.”