Why oil and gas companies must step up their efforts towards clean energy sources

first_imgEfforts made by oil and gas companies to move towards clean energy sourcesSome oil and gas companies are diversifying their energy operations to include renewables and other low-carbon technologies, according to the report.But the average investment by firms in non-core areas has so far been limited to about 1% of total capital spending, with the largest outlays going to solar PV and wind.The IEA says some companies have also diversified by acquiring existing non-core businesses – across electricity distribution, electric vehicle charging and batteries – while stepping up their research and development activity.Despite that, the report highlights there are “few signs of the large-scale change in capital allocation needed to put the world on a more sustainable path”.The agency believes a step up in investments of fuels such as hydrogen, biomethane and advanced biofuels is essential and can deliver the energy system benefits of oil and gas without net carbon emissions.Within 10 years, it says these low-carbon fuels need to account for around 15% of overall investment in fuel supply if the world is to get on course to tackling climate change – with transitions becoming “much harder and more expensive” in the absence of these types of fuels.Dr Birol believes the scale of the climate challenge requires a “broad coalition encompassing governments, investors, companies and everyone else who is genuinely committed to reducing emissions”, which oil and gas companies must be “fully on board with”. GlobalData notes that 111 oil and gas projects are expected to commence operations in the UK during the period between 2021 and 2025 (Credit: Flickr/Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement) The oil and gas industry needs to step up its climate efforts immediately as the world transitions towards clean energy sources, says a report.Oil and gas firms are reliant on producing high-polluting fossil fuels but intergovernmental organisation the International Energy Agency (IEA) believes they must reduce their greenhouse gas emissions – otherwise their long-term profitability could be at risk.The IEA’s report, titled Oil and Gas Industry in Energy Transitions, says some companies have taken steps to support efforts to combat climate change, but the industry as a whole could play a “much more significant role” through its engineering capabilities and financial resources.IEA executive director Dr Fatih Birol believes all energy companies will be affected by the transition towards clean energy.He added: “Every part of the industry needs to consider how to respond. Doing nothing is simply not an option.“The first immediate task for all parts of the industry is reducing the environmental footprint of their own operations.“As of today, around 15% of global energy-related greenhouse gas emissions come from the process of getting oil and gas out of the ground and to consumers.“A large part of these emissions can be brought down relatively quickly and easily.” How oil and gas companies can move towards clean energy sourcesAs part of the efforts to move towards a greener global economy, a number of industries are set to face increased pressure to reduce their CO2 output across the supply chain.In oil and gas, the IEA believes reducing methane leaks to the atmosphere is the “single most important and cost-effective way” for the sector to bring down its emissions.But the report says there are various other opportunities to lower the intensity of the emissions produced.One option could be to eliminate routine flaring and integrate renewables and low-carbon electricity into new upstream and liquefied natural gas (LNG) developments.The IEA believes offshore wind could play a crucial role for oil and gas companies (Credit: Flickr/mmatsuura)Dr Birol said oil and gas companies can use their “extensive know-how and deep pockets” to play a “crucial role” in accelerating the deployment of key renewable options such as offshore wind.He added the firms can also play a part in enabling “key capital-intensive clean energy technologies – such as carbon capture, utilisation, storage and hydrogen – to reach maturity”.Dr Birol believes without the industry’s input, these technologies may not achieve the scale needed for them to “move the dial on emissions”. Why investments in oil and gas projects are still required despite clean energy transitionThe report notes that low-carbon electricity will “undoubtedly move to centre stage in the future energy mix”, but that investment in oil and gas projects will still be needed – even in the proposed rapid clean energy transition.If investment in existing oil and gas fields were to stop completely, the decline in energy output would be about 8% per year, it claimed.That would be larger than any plausible fall in global demand, so the IEA says investment in existing fields and some new ones must remain part of the picture.The IEA believes a step up in investments of fuels such as hydrogen, biomethane and advanced biofuels is essential (Credit: Pixabay/Anita Starzycka)The agency speculates that some company owners may be in favour of sticking with a specialisation in oil and gas, with an eye on shifting towards natural gas over time – for as long as these fuels are in demand and investment returns are sufficient.But the report warns that these companies will also need to think through their “strategic response to new and pervasive challenges”.It says the stakes are particularly high for national oil companies charged with the stewardship of countries’ hydrocarbon resources and for their government owners and host societies that typically rely heavily on the associated oil income.National oil companies – such as Saudi Aramco and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company – account for well over half of global production and an even larger share of reserves.Some of these firms are high performing, but many are poorly positioned to adapt to changing global energy dynamics, according to the IEA.It adds that global trends have meant a number of countries have renewed their commitment to reform and to diversify their economies, with fundamental changes to development models in many major resource holders now looking unavoidable.But the report says national oil companies can provide important elements of stability for economies during this process if they are “operating effectively and alert to the risks and opportunities”. The IEA believes oil and gas companies could play a bigger role in combatting climate change through their engineering capabilities and financial resourceslast_img read more

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Cryopeak LNG Solutions Corporation completes largest ever North American delivery of liquefied natural gas

first_imgThe shipment of LNG totaled approximately 18,000 gallons and was made possible by Cryopeak’s proprietary “Super B-Train” Cryopeak’s Super B-Train is designed to have up to 70 percent greater load capacity than standard trailers operating in Canada. (Credit: PRNewsfoto/Cryopeak LNG Solutions Corporation) Cryopeak LNG Solutions Corporation, based in Richmond BC, has completed  the largest ever North American delivery of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by truck, with the shipment going to power the Silvertip mine on the Yukon/BC border owned by Coeur Silvertip Holdings Ltd. (Coeur Silvertip), a subsidiary of Coeur Mining, Inc.The shipment of LNG totaled approximately 18,000 gallons and was made possible by Cryopeak’s proprietary “Super B-Train.” Cryopeak’s mission is to provide LNG to remote locations in the most reliable, sustainable and economic manner possible. Cryopeak primarily focuses its fuel delivery efforts on the mining industry as well as for power for remote communities through commercial partnerships that help their customers reduce carbon footprint, lower energy costs and maximize operational efficiencies. Cryopeak’s Super B-Train is designed to have up to 70 percent greater load capacity than standard trailers operating in Canada today, improving LNG’s competitiveness as a fuel source for remote mining locations and communities. Understanding that transportation often represents the largest cost of LNG for customers, Coeur Silvertip was eager to work with Cryopeak on this initiative.“We are pleased to support the development of the new Super B-Train LNG trailer which will increase LNG payload and decrease transportation costs of LNG to the Silvertip mine,” said Rick Loughery, Purchasing Manager for Coeur Silvertip.Coeur Silvertip has been a pioneer in the use of LNG as a fuel at its remote mine site in Canada. Typically, remote off-grid mines are powered by diesel or other liquid fuels. Cryopeak has worked with Coeur Silvertip to transition its operations to a more environmentally sound fuel solution of LNG. This transition has displaced high-cost diesel consumption at the mine and lowered the emissions profile.“Lowering LNG costs through maximizing transportation payload is an important initiative for Cryopeak and our customers. We are excited that this technology is now proven and going forward we will seek to extend the operation of this new trailer across Canada,” said Calum McClure, CEO, Cryopeak. Source: Company Press Releaselast_img read more

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Diversified Gas & Oil to acquire certain upstream and midstream assets

first_imgThe Company today announces its intention to carry out a placing of new ordinary shares in the capital of the Company Diversified Gas & Oil to acquire certain upstream and midstream assets. (Credit: John R Perry from Pixabay) Diversified Gas & Oil PLC (AIM: DGOC), the U.S. based owner and operator of natural gas, natural gas liquids, and oil wells as well as midstream assets, is pleased to announce that it has signed a conditional Purchase and Sale Agreement (“PSA”) to acquire certain upstream and midstream assets from a US-listed oil and gas company (the “US-Listed Vendor”) (the “Potential Asset Acquisition”). This announcement follows a similar announcement on 8 April 2020 in relation to the conditional Purchase and Sale Agreement with Carbon Energy Corporation (the “Potential Carbon Acquisition” and, together with the Potential Asset Acquisition, the “Potential Acquisitions”).The Company today announces its intention to carry out a placing of new ordinary shares in the capital of the Company (the “Placing”). The Placing is being conducted through an accelerated bookbuild process (the “Bookbuild”) outside the United States, which will launch immediately following the release of this announcement (including the appendices, the “Announcement”). Concurrently with the Placing, the Company is proposing to offer and sell new ordinary shares to certain institutional investors in the United States pursuant to direct subscription agreements (the “Subscriptions”, and together with the Placing, the “Proposed Fundraising”). The Proposed Fundraising will result, in aggregate, in the issue of up to 64,280,500 new ordinary shares representing up to 10.0% of the Company’s existing issued share capital, to raise approximately US$87.0 million (before expenses and based on the prevailing market price of the Company’s shares on 11 May 2020). The net proceeds will be used to part-fund the Potential Acquisitions in the event that either or both complete, whilst maintaining a Transaction Adjusted Net Debt/Transaction Adjusted EBITDA of approximately 2.3x.Highlights of Potential Acquisitions Initial gross aggregate consideration for the Potential Acquisitions expected to be US$235 million (subject to customary closing adjustments) (Carbon: US$110 million, US-Listed Vendor: US$125 million), with potential aggregate contingent consideration of US$35 million to be paid over a period of up to three years based on certain pricing targets should commodity prices rise. If completed, each acquisition will have a deemed effective date of 1 January 2020;· The assets to be acquired pursuant to the Potential Acquisitions include approximately 7,000 net wells, with combined 2019 adjusted net production of approximately 18 Mboepd (99% natural gas), representing approximately 20% of 2019 group net production;· Approximately 4,900 miles of gas gathering assets included within the Potential Acquisitions as well as two active natural gas storage fields. Midstream assets offer the potential for cost and operational synergies to the Company, including over 200 interconnects with existing DGO midstream and direct interstate access, as well as the ability to generate third-party storage revenues;· Robust hedge portfolio covering the Potential Carbon Acquisition, with approximately two thirds of production for the next 27 months having an average NYMEX downside protection of approximately $2.60/MMBtu (based on adjusted 2019 produced volumes declined at an assumed 6% per year);· If completed, the Potential Acquisitions are expected to add PDP Reserves of approximately 122 MMboe with an estimated pre-tax PV10 of approximately US$374 million, with the combined initial acquisition price reflecting an approximate 37% discount to PDP PV10;· Adjusted EBITDA for the next twelve months from 1 June 2020 for the Potential Acquisitions is estimated to be US$61-65 million, resulting in a consideration to NTM EBITDA ratio for the assets of approximately 3.3 – 3.6x after adjusting for management’s estimated closing adjustments of approximately US$18 million;· The Potential Assets are estimated to have attractive Total Cash Costs of US$5.99/boe, including immediately realisable synergies but not accounting for the longer term synergies that the Company expects to realise through its Smarter Well Management Programme and operational optimisation. The addition of these assets into the DGO portfolio is expected to drive a 5 – 10% reduction in unit-level base LOE and a 10 – 15% reduction in unit-level G&A for the Company;· The Potential Acquisitions are expected to be immediately accretive to the Company’s earnings and dividends per share, based on the Company’s 2019 numbers, management’s estimates for the assets, and an assumed 10% placing at market;· The Potential Acquisitions are both conditional and remain subject to, among other things, further diligence and there can be no certainty that either will complete;· The Company’s intention is to part fund the Potential Acquisitions through the Proposed Fundraising, with the balance of the consideration funded from a new US$160 – 165 million long-term amortising senior secured term loan. At present, it is anticipated that the term loan will have a 10-year maturity and ~6.50% coupon, and be secured on certain of the upstream gas and oil assets from the Potential Acquisitions;· The Company will announce further information on the Potential Acquisitions and the potential securitised term loan in due course following completion of customary diligence.Proposed Fundraising Highlights· The Company today announces its intention to carry out the Placing of new ordinary shares, available to eligible institutional investors outside the United States in “offshore transactions” as defined in, and in accordance with, Regulation S under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”). Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited, Mirabaud Securities Limited and Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Limited (together, the “Joint Global Coordinators”) are acting as joint global coordinators and joint bookrunners in connection with the Placing. Cenkos Securities plc is acting as Nominated Adviser to the Company;· The Joint Global Coordinators   are conducting the Placing through the Bookbuild which they will launch immediately following the release of this Announcement and that they will make available to eligible institutional investors;· The Company expects to close the Bookbuild no later than 8.00 a.m. on 12 May 2020, but the Joint Global Coordinators and the Company reserve the right to close the Bookbuild earlier or later, without further notice;· Concurrently with the Placing (and conditional upon the placing agreement executed in connection with the Placing not having been terminated), the Company is proposing to offer and sell new ordinary shares in the United States to certain institutional investors pursuant to direct subscription agreements through the Subscriptions in which the new ordinary shares are being offered and sold pursuant to an exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act;· The Proposed Fundraising is expected to raise approximately US$87.0 million in aggregate (before expenses and based on the prevailing market price of the Company’s shares on 11 May 2020). The number of shares the Company will issue pursuant to the Proposed Fundraising will not exceed 10.0% of the existing issued share capital of the Company;· The Company has consulted with a number of existing shareholders and other investors ahead of the release of this announcement, including regarding the rationale for the Placing;· As detailed above, and subject to closing the Potential Acquisitions, the Company will use the net proceeds from the Proposed Fundraising to part fund the Potential Acquisitions. The Placing and the Subscriptions are not conditional on the completion of the Potential Acquisitions. Should the Company not close the Proposed Acquisitions, the Company will determine the most appropriate use of the net proceeds, including potentially paying down amounts drawn on its revolving credit facility and/or investing in other acquisition opportunities aligned with its stated strategy;· Shares issued pursuant to the Proposed Fundraising will be eligible for the Q4 2019 and Q1 2020 dividends, each of 3.50 cents per share, as well as all future dividends. The ex-dividend dates of the Q4 2019 and Q1 2020 dividends are 28 May 2020 and 3 September 2020 respectively, and are expected to be paid on 26 June 2020 and 25 September 2020 respectively.Transfer to the Main MarketAs announced on 4 May 2020, the Company is in the final stages of its previously announced transfer from AIM to listing on the Premium Listing Segment of the Official List of the Financial Conduct Authority (the “Official List”) and to trading on the London Stock Exchange’s Main Market for listed securities (the “Main Market”). The Company expects to publish a prospectus on 13 May 2020 in connection with the transfer. Key information from the prospectus is contained in Appendix 2 to this Announcement.Settlement of the Proposed Fundraising, together with the admission of the Company’s ordinary share capital, as enlarged by the Proposed Fundraising, to the Premium Listing Segment of the Official List and the London Stock Exchange’s Main Market (“Admission”) is anticipated to occur on or around 18 May 2020. As a consequence of its Admission, Diversified Gas & Oil PLC is expected to enter the FTSE All-Share in the September 2020 review.Commenting on the Potential Acquisitions and Proposed Fundraising, CEO, Rusty Hutson said:“DGO’s continued success is built on its ability to capitalise on opportunities to acquire and enhance complementary producing assets and to leverage our operational excellence and cost discipline to extract maximum value.  These Potential Acquisitions are entirely consistent with this growth strategy and represent a compelling opportunity to enhance the profitability of the business, and subsequently the shareholder returns.  As we have always stated, maintaining a healthy balance sheet is a key priority, and we are therefore seeking to fund these proposed acquisitions through a combination of debt and equity, consistent with the financing of our acquisitive growth to date. Our unique business model, underpinned by low-cost and low-risk cash flow from US natural gas, enables the Company to deliver shareholder returns at a time when many other industry players are unable to do so.  We look forward to providing an update on this process in due course as we seek value creation opportunities through prudent growth and funding.” Source: Company Press Releaselast_img read more

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PGS and ION announce global 2D exploration collaboration

first_img PGS and ION announce global 2D exploration collaboration. (Credit: Adam Radosavljevic from Pixabay) PGS and ION Geophysical Corporation today announced an agreement to collaborate globally on 2D exploration data.Both companies have modern, high-quality MultiClient data libraries that together cover all the significant hydrocarbon provinces around the world.The new joint data library will comprise nearly a million line kilometres of uniquely complementary data, including many areas of genuine broadband seismic that have substantial opportunity for integration and reimaging. Drawing on PGS broadband 2D GeoStreamer offering and ION’s latest imaging technology, the companies will produce enhanced deliverables with higher resolution and greater spatial coverage, offering deeper insights and more reliable pre-stack attributes for exploration screening on a global basis.PGS and ION intend to develop an integrated seamless 2D seismic data library over time, creating a comprehensive, data-rich environment to inform exploration business decisions for E&P operators.  The combined data library will be jointly marketed.“The combined 2D data libraries will provide E&P companies with a more efficient way to identify and high-grade attractive frontier investment opportunities,” said Berit Osnes, PGS’ EVP, New Ventures.  “ION’s BasinSPAN offering is globally recognized as the benchmark tool for exploration insights at the basin-scale. Referencing and integrating our GeoStreamer enriched 2D data library into that framework will create a valuable opportunity to add resolution to that understanding.”“PGS’ global framework of modern data, much of which was acquired with long offsets and GeoStreamer multi-sensor acquisition technology, is exceptionally compatible to integrate with ION’s BasinSPAN framework to deepen basin characterization and insights for our customers,” said Ken Williamson, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of ION’s E&P Technology and Services group.  “The collaboration extends beyond existing data to include new program activity and the integration of third-party data where relevant to further augment the value of the offering.” Source: Company Press Release Both companies have modern, high-quality MultiClient data libraries that together cover all the significant hydrocarbon provinces around the worldlast_img read more

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Husky Energy commissions third field at Liwan gas project offshore China

first_imgFirst gas from the field is expected to be delivered to the end users from early November The Liuhua 29-1 field is expected to deliver first gas to the end users from the early November. (Credit: gloriaurban4 from Pixabay) Canadian integrated energy company Husky Energy has completed commissioning at the Liuhua 29-1 field, which is the third field at the Liwan gas project offshore China.The company has completed the seven-well Liuhua 29-1 field, in collaboration with China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC).Husky said that the field was completed despite the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the associated global economic volatility.The Liuhua 29-1 field is expected to deliver first gas to the end users from early November.Located in the block 29/26 of South China Sea, approximately 300km south-east of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, $6.5bn Liwan gas project is said to be China’s first deep-water gas field development.The project consists of two natural gas fields including the already producing Liwan 3-1 and Liuhua 34-2 fields.Husky Energy CEO Rob Peabody said: “The startup of Liuhua 29-1 just two years after the project was sanctioned is a significant milestone for Husky and CNOOC. This third field will provide Husky with additional stability in funds from operations.”The Liuhua 29-1 field is expected to generate $1.3 billion in funds for HuskyThe company said that the third gas field is tied to the existing infrastructure at Liwan project.Till date, two producing gas fields at the Liwan project totally produced nearly 390 million cubic feet of natural gas a day and 16,000 barrels of associated liquids per day.Husky Energy said that alone the Liuhua 29-1 field is estimated to produce $1.3bn in funds from operations for over the next decade.Once operational in 2021, the whole project is estimated to deliver approximately $950m in funds and is expected to produce 450 mmcf/day of natural and 17,500 bbls/day of liquidsRecently, Husky Energy has achieved first oil at the Spruce Lake Central thermal project in Saskatchewan.last_img read more

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Santos submits plan to drill Dancer-1 well, offshore Australia

first_img Drilling for the Dancer-1 well is expected to take nearly 30 days. (Credit: Kasey Houston/FreeImages) Santos has submitted an environmental plan to Australian offshore energy regulator NOPSEMA to undertake drilling of the Dancer-1 exploration well in permit area WA-1-P located offshore Australia.Contained in water depths of nearly 63m, the Dancer-1 well will target a gas reservoir in the Legendre formation. The drilling work will be performed with a jack-up mobile-offshore drilling unit (MODU), which will be supported by vessels and helicopters.Santos is expected to begin the drilling in the fourth quarter of this year.The company’s environmental plan for the Dancer-1 well campaign will be valid until the end of 2022. Currently, the plan has been kept open for comment by NOPSEMA.According to NOPSEMA, a sidetrack or re-spud is not included by Santos as part of the drilling programme. However, it has been included as a contingency, said the regulator.The environment plan submitted by Santos’ subsidiary Santos WA Northwest covers drilling activities along with all MODU, vessel and helicopter operations to be taken up within the operational area.The single-well drilling programme is expected to last nearly 30 days. The contingency drilling plan could take up to 75 days though, after taking into consideration the unfavourable weather, additional drilling work, and also operational challenges.NOPSEMA stated that the Dancer-1 well is located 60km south-southeast of the Dampier Archipelago.Exploration well to use only water-based drilling fluidsThe exploration well is planned to use only water-based drilling fluids, while no well testing to surface has been considered by the company. Santos intends to evaluate downhole formation for the well, which could include wireline logging, vertical seismic profiling, and coring.After completing the drilling work, the company will plug and abandon the Dancer-1 well.Earlier this month, Santos announced a final investment decision (FID) for the $235m $235m infill development at Bayu-Undan field, offshore Timor-Leste. The exploration well in permit area WA-1-P will target a gas reservoir in the Legendre formation last_img read more

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Interest in buy-to-let could plummet

first_imgHome » News » Housing Market » Interest in buy-to-let could plummet Interest in buy-to-let could plummet20th April 20160495 Views Interest in new purchases from buy-to-let investors dropped 27 per cent in March compared to the same month last year as April 1st tax change starts to bite, according to Rightmove.The fall reverses the upward trend between December and February which brought a 24 per cent year-on-year increase in buy-to-let enquiries, indicating a potential slowdown in new investor purchases at least in the short-term.Demand from home-hunters is at an all-time high with a record number of Q1 enquiries, so the pause from investors could give some first-time buyers more of an opportunity to make a move.Some buy-to-let investors took a break from looking for new properties in March as the new tax changes deadline loomed, the new data from Rightmove reveals.Whilst Rightmove recorded its busiest ever Q1 for enquiries to estate agents, the intentions of buyers shifted in March, with the number of people saying they were planning to buy a property to rent out dropping by 27 per cent compared to the same month last year. This contrasts with the increase in interest seen from investors between December and February (+24 per cent year-on-year) as they tried to make last minute purchases before April’s additional 3 per cent tax deadline.Sam Mitchell (left), Rightmove’s Head of Lettings, said that the waning of interest definitely seems to predict a slowdown in the buy-to-let market, but “what’s not yet clear is if this will only turn out to be a short-term pause. It could be that some investors are waiting until the tax changes have some time to bed in before they review their business and continue to make purchases. If this removes some of the competition for smaller properties then it could spell good news for many first-time buyers with a deposit ready as they may find now is the ideal time to make a move.”Buy-to-let investors not deterred by the tax changes and looking for the best yields could consider buying in areas in the north such as Durham and Merseyside. The top four locations for best yields are all in these counties, with Peterlee in Durham highest at 9.1 per cent, followed by Bootle in Merseyside at 8.6 per cent. In third place is the neighbouring town of Birkenhead offering a yield of 7.8 per cent and fourth is Stanley in Durham at 7.7 per cent.Sam added, “These areas where you can buy a two bed property for around £60-70k seem to offer a sound investment as long as the demand is there from tenants, so it’s worth speaking to local agents about what the rental market is like. Whilst the highest demand for rental properties is often in the South and the East of England, this quarter’s data shows demand is growing in Manchester in places like Ashton-Under-Lyne and Stalybridge so they’re worth considering this year as well.”Greater London (+1.3 per cent) and the North West (+1.1 per cent) were the strongest performing regions this quarter for rental increases, with the South East and East of England both falling by 0.1 per cent, though the East of England’s annual increase of 5.9 per cent still sees it outstrip all other regions.Rightmove April 1st tax change buy-to-let buy-to-let investors 2016-04-20The Negotiator Related articles 40% of tenants planning a move now that Covid has eased says Nationwide3rd May 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 First-time buyers, not Stamp Duty, now driving market says leading agency29th April 2021What’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.last_img read more

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Zoopla buys another agency tech provider

first_imgIf Brexit has damaged the property market this year then Zoopla has managed to dodge the worst of it, its full year results reveal.Profits at parent company ZPG increased by 44% to £36.7m in 2016 while revenue jumped by 84% to £197.7m. Revenue from agents is up by 5% and the number of agents listing with Zoopla increased by 10% this year.ZPG says all its sites, which includes Zoopla, PrimeLocation, uSwitch and recently-acquired agent software provider PSG, totalled 600m visits over the past year.PSG is not its only tech acquisition. ZPG also reveal that it has bought Essex-based cloud agency website design provider Technicweb.ZPG hasn’t quite seen off the OnTheMarket threat despite the upbeat full year results. During a webcast this morning ZPG said its portal-only revenue is down 1%, due to both ‘churn’ created by OnTheMarket and ‘other headwinds’.But it is clear from the results that the purchase of PSG has been a major plank in ZPG’s strategy to grow its agency customer base by luring back OnTheMarket switchers, and today’s announcement that Welsh agent Robert and Co has returned to Zoopla from OnTheMarket would seem to confirm this. The Newport based company said ZPG’s PSG offering was a key reason for its switch.Alex Chesterman (pictured), CEO of ZPG, says: “The acquisition of Property Software Group has been transformational, allowing us to offer the UK’s only end-to-end solution for property professionals including software, workflow, CRM and marketing tools. As a Group, we now have significant cross-sell opportunities with over 23,000 unique Property partners taking at least of one of our services.”ZPG says it also invested in online home insurance innovator NEOS in yet another move by Zoopla to create a ‘whole house’ digital services company both for consumers and agents. This includes Running Costs, a household bills comparison service, and MoveIT, ZPG’s sales and lettings lead referrals system. Technicweb Zoopla ZPG November 30, 2016Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Marketing » Zoopla buys another agency tech provider previous nextMarketingZoopla buys another agency tech providerRosy full year results reveal more acquisitions by parent group but OTM battle still bitingNigel Lewis30th November 20160797 Viewslast_img read more

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Property Ombudsman expels record seven members in one month

first_imgThe Property Ombudsman (TPO) has expelled seven member agents, which is believed to be the largest number kicked out of its scheme in a single month since the organisation was established in 1990.The agents are Exeter firm Bower & Bower, Secret Property in Halifax, Marilla Garland Property Management in Cambridge, Seekers Estate Agents in Birmingham, Alexander Reed in Middlesex, Abby Lettings and Sales in Sunderland and HAB and KAL Properties, also in Middlesex.As is always the case, the agents were taken to TPO by disgruntled customers for breaches of the TPO code of conduct and, after losing their cases, refused or were unable to pay the agreed award and therefore have been expelled.All the companies involved have been kicked out for between one and three years but, unless they pay the agreed awards, will be unable to join any other redress scheme and therefore cannot continue trading.This is an unprecedented number of agents to be kicked out of TPO’s scheme; usually only one or two face the ultimate sanction each month.TPO has highlighted one of the seven cases, which is a shocking tale of two complaints against 44-year-old company Bower & Bower.Shocking caseBoth cases involved late or non-payment of collected rent to the two landlords involved, a failure to keep or provide timely and accurate statements of account, and in one case a failure to return deposits even when TPO directed the company to do so. TPO also suggests in its statement that Bower & Bower were uncooperative during its investigation.“One of the key roles of an agent under their management agreement is to pay over rent received from a tenant to a landlord in a timely manner.  I am critical of Bower & Bower’s failures to do this or provide sufficient explanation,” says Property Ombudsman Katrine Sporle (pictured, left).Extraordinarily, The Property Ombudsman also says it believes that Bower & Bower is still offering homes for sale and rent, which would mean it is trading illegally because the company cannot fulfil the legal requirement to be registered with a government-approved redress scheme until it pays the agreed awards.Read more about TPO decisions.Katrine Sporle bower & Bower The Property Ombudaman TPO exeter expelled members June 22, 2018Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Agencies & People » Property Ombudsman expels record seven members in one month previous nextAgencies & PeopleProperty Ombudsman expels record seven members in one monthTPO has kicked out the agents after they refused to pay agreed awards, although at least one continues to trade and would appear to be breaking the law.Nigel Lewis22nd June 201802,143 Viewslast_img read more

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Spicerhaart savaged after it lays off hundreds of staff ‘via conference call’

first_imgHome » News » Agencies & People » Spicerhaart savaged after it lays off hundreds of staff ‘via conference call’ previous nextAgencies & PeopleSpicerhaart savaged after it lays off hundreds of staff ‘via conference call’Decision to close branches minutes before government revealed job protection package baffles employees, many of whom have turned to social media to complain.Nigel Lewis23rd March 2020013,290 Views Spicerhaart has been heavily criticised over the weekend as the extent of a sudden decision to close dozens of branches and lay off ‘hundreds’ of staff across its network via a conference call leaked out.This includes an unprecedented statement from eProp Services CEO Jon Cooke, who tweeted over the weekend: “SHAMEFUL! As industry leaders we all know tough decisions may need to be taken to secure our businesses BUT to not wait and factor in government support shows the true culture of an organisation shame on you Paul Smith.”Late on Friday evening a sales consultant working for its Haart branch in Camberwell told a national newspaper that she had been fired at 5.45pm, just minutes before the government announced that it will soon launch a scheme to help companies retain staff by paying for them to go on temporary leave of absence.Amanda Hayes (left), who was one of three people working at the branch, has accused the company of being ‘callous and inhumane’ after initially offering her a promotion before she and other staff were summarily told they were being made redundant. This includes being fired without confirmation of whether she will be paid this month.Several sources have told The Negotiator that 40% of Spicerhaart’s 180+ branch network is being closed.Part of the reason for the cull is a weaker-than-expected performance of 19-branch estate agency Butters John Bee, which Spicerhaart bought in September 2017. The family of agents affected by the cull include 10-branch Chewton Rose, 11-branch Darlows, 120-branch Haart, 12-branch Felicity J Lord, 10-branch Haybrook as well as 19-branch Butters John Bee.Like Amanda Hayes, many staff given their marching orders on Friday have not gone quietly, angered that Spicerhaart would get rid of them as the government announced a support package for struggling businesses.“How come you chose to fire so many of us today (leaving us all completely screwed as nobody else will be hiring) when the government have just said they will pay for 80% of our salaries and you would only need to contribute 20% of that,” one former employee tweeted.Another employee, who lost her job from Haart’s Blaby office, said: “A mountain of hard working individuals and bright talent, lost in one fell swoop with no notice or answers to pay or where we stand. Myself along with others have mortgages, families, and commitments but were left completely shell shocked with no answers.”Read more about the government proposals.Cost reductionsSpicerhaart says the branch closures and headcount reductions were part of ‘cost reduction’ measures designed to mitigate the effect of the business downturn resulting from the Coronavirus outbreak, and that it was ‘desperately sorry’ about the redundancies.Message of support have flooded in from across the industry for the staff affected including on social media.“Sad news coming out from our colleagues at Haart Estate Agents and subsidiaries like butters John bee etc and, all competition and rivalry aside, I hope all the great people find suitable roles quickly to help support their families,” said Awais Ahmad (left), founder of West Midlands agency AP Morgan.Could the branches be bought?Several companies are thought to be interested in acquiring the branches shut down by Haart including Connells, whose CEO David Plumtree was busy on LinkedIn over the weekend making contact with some of the key staff made redundant on Friday. amanda haynes haart Haybrook butters john bee Chewton Rose spicerhaart Darlows Felicity J Lord March 23, 2020Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021last_img read more

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