Real estate agent comparison site OpenAgent has secured $6 million funding from Hollard Investments to help Australians find the right agent to sell their property.
Hollard Investments’ other investments in Australia are Greenstone Ltd and Hollard Insurance, both founded by Richard Enthoven, who will now join the OpenAgent board.
It can be tough for Australian home owners to find a trusted, qualified and experienced agent to handle what is likely the biggest financial transaction they’ll ever make in their lifetime: selling their home.
Convinced that failure to compare agents is a significant contributor to poor outcomes for both sellers and buyers in real estate, OpenAgent set out to fill this lack of information and guidance by ranking all real estate agents based on past sales and customer reviews and connecting home sellers with the best agent in their area and for their property.
How is OpenAgent doing so far?
It is now the fastest growing player in the sector, having trebled in size year on year.
The site uses data from more than two million sales and 15,000 customer reviews, has assisted in the sale of $2.6 billion worth of Australian property and also made it to our 2015 SMART 100 list.
Furthermore, this funding round from Hollard Investment takes OpenAgent’s total funding to $8 million and follows $2 million investment in 2013 and 2014 by a group of angel investors, including Pete Flint, the founder of US real estate giant Trulia which was recently acquired by Zillow for US$3.5 billion.
Co-founder and co-CEO of OpenAgent, Zoe Pointon, said this new funding will be used to drive greater awareness of the service and improve the user experience on the platform.
“Richard is a big supporter of our direction, and has been a mentor to both me and my co-founder Marta Higuera for the past year and a half,” she said.
“His own entrepreneurial spirit and experience growing companies that help Australians make important financial decisions will be invaluable to OpenAgent.”
Why has Richard Enthoven invested in OpenAgent?
Founder and MD of the Hollard Australia Group, Richard Enthoven, started the Australian arm of the global company in 1999 and is responsible for its tremendous growth – to over 1,000 staff and one million customers in Australia – over the last 15 years.
Richard recognises the potential for OpenAgent in the market.
“I’ve worked closely with Zoe and Marta over the last 18 months and have watched them achieve each ambitious goal they have set for themselves and the business,” he said.
“There is an undeniable need for greater transparency and quality assurance in the Australian real estate industry, and this investment in OpenAgent will allow them to provide this service to more consumers.”
“I think we are only scratching the surface of what is possible in the Australian property industry and I’m excited to get involved at this stage of the company’s growth,” Richard went on to remark.