Foxtons will hope its listing deal with OnTheMarket will help cool shareholder anger

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The London-focused estate agent, which has suffered major backlash from activist investors, will be hoping its agreement with the online market place will improve business further.

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mbattled London-focused estate agent Foxtons has struck an agreement with online property firm OnTheMarket to list all its UK properties on the site.

Foxtons, which has 50 branches across London, will now list all its residential sales and letting properties on OnTheMarket.com.

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OnTheMarket boss Jason Tebb said that being recognized by Foxtons was “further proof our strategy is working”.

The move comes as Foxtons faces pressure from aggressive activist shareholders for a shake-up of the firm, while more recent pressure has seen investors urge the firm to put itself up for sale.

Foxtons named Guy Gittins as its new chief executive in May in a bid to address shareholder concern over high pay and poor performance.

Gittins was poached from rival agency Chestertons and begins in September in place of outgoing boss Nick Budden.

In 2021, two-fifths of shareholders voted against executive pay, decreasing to approve a cash bonus of £389,000 and shares worth £569,000 for Budden, partly because Foxtons had claimed almost £7m in government Covid support.

The revolt prompted the firm to agree to review its remuneration scheme.

And Foxtons’ largest shareholder Hosking Partners has been pushing for “radical board-level change” since mid-2021, while in March this year, Montreal-based Converium Capital built a small stake in Foxtons and pressed the company to sell itself.

Last year, Foxtons also replaced its longstanding chair Ian Barlow with Nigel Rich.

Both Gittins and Rich have agreed to lower salaries than their predecessors, while the role of chief operating officer has been rolled into the chief executive’s job., helping the firm to reduce its executive wage bill.

In the past five years, the Foxton’s share price has dropped by 60% to 37.5p. The low share price has persisted in spite of the firm returning to profitability in 2021, with pre-tax profits of £5.6 million compared to a £1.4 million loss in 2020.

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Credit: www.standard.co.uk /

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