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Emoov, pioneer online agency, acquired by small family business

A low profile family company called the Griffin Property Company has acquired Emoov, the online agency which was a pioneering name in digital property lettings and sales.

Founded in 2010 by Russell Quirk - then a digital pioneer, now a PR man - the Emoov agency claimed to have sold 4,500 properties worth a total of £1 billion by 2015.  In 2018 it acquired both Sarah Beeny’s online sales platform Tepilo and lettings website urban.co.uk to create a business worth (according to those involved in it) some £100m. It was backed by shareholders including Channel 4 and Northern & Shell .

On the lettings side, urban was already considered an effective business by the time of the Emoov takeover, with turnover reported to have been some £350,000 annually. 


However by late 2018 Emoov was known to be in trouble financially, despite engaging in what turned out to be a controversial crowdfunding exercise. In December 2018 it entered administration after apparently “running out of money.”

The name was resuscitated the following year by digital company Mashroom and it remained a low profile online operation running lettings and sales - until a press release yesterday revealed that it had been acquired by Griffin Property Co. 

Griffin’s website says it originated back in 2000 as a traditional bricks and mortar agency in Southend-on-Sea, hitting problems during the period of the global financial crisis and then returning in the late 2010s as online sales and lettings services. 

Relaunched in 2022 with a new website, Griffin now describes itself this way: “Still owned and operated by director Nick Neale, Griffin Property Co is a family business, with son Jacob working in sales and daughter Sophie in lettings. Conducted with the benefit of a wealth of experience in the estate agent industry, Nick is looking to drive the business forward while keeping the emphasis on excellent customer service and a truly national reach.”

The statement announcing that it had acquired Emoov says: “A trusted choice for homeowners, Emoov is an award-winning brand with a strong reputation nationwide. The merger presents an exciting opportunity for Griffin Property Co to leverage Emoov's established brand and expertise, paving the way for improved services in the online property market.

“… By combining forces with Emoov, Griffin Property Co aims to strengthen its position as a leader in the online estate agency sector, setting it apart in a crowded marketplace and solidifying its own reputation as a trusted provider of innovative property solutions.

"Acquiring Emoov represents a thrilling chapter for Griffin Property Co, as it marks a pivotal moment in our journey towards reshaping the landscape of online estate agency.Together, we are committed to delivering exceptional value and setting new standards of excellence.”


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