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Entrepreneurs

How Cuckooz Introduced Lucrative Childcare Business To Co-Working Spaces

Imagine if you will these scenarios. You are a tech or creative business traveller arriving in London possibly with your family for a two-week visit that’s part meetings, part pleasure. Or you are a parent wanting to return to work flexibly and who needs somewhere cool to tap away on your laptop while your offspring are looked after by qualified crèche staff. If either of these scenarios sounds familiar, then you’re part of a trend of changing employee needs and business demographics ramping up demand for both design-led…

Foxtons Founder Makes Almost £100m In Four Years From City Offices

Jon Hunt, the founder of high profile estate agency Foxtons, has made almost £100m profit by selling a London office block he bought just four years ago. Hunt bought Princess House in EC4 for £29m in 2014, before extensively refurbishing it and relaunching it as Cannon Green. His investment company Ocubus is now reported to have sold the building to Korean investment company Kiwoom for around £120m. Hunt originally founded Foxtons before selling it just before the 2008 financial crash. It is also understood Hunt owns a £60m…

Chesterman Moves Into Used Car Business

Co-founder of Zoopla Alex Chesterman has raised the finance he needs to start a platform designed to disrupt the used car trade. Chesterman has raised a seed round of around £30m from Stride.VC, dmg ventures, and Octopus Ventures, it is reported. It is thought Cazoo will allow customers to select and buy, rent or finance a used car. Then have it delivered direct within 48 days on a ‘money back if not delighted’ basis. Chesterman says: “I’m delighted to announce this investment in my latest venture, Cazoo, and am very excited…

London Has No Young Proptech Hotshots

The new ‘25 under 25’ list of London’s most promising young tech entrepreneurs does not contain a single proptech name. The list, published recently by Tech London Advocates, recognises the excellence of entrepreneurs under age 25 from various fields. It is headed by Aleksandra Pedraszewska, 24, co-founder of VividQ a software builder for holographic 3D display. Anisah Osman Britton, founder and CEO of 23 Code Street, a coding school for women also makes the list. However, anything remotely property related is conspicuous by…

Reuben Brothers Spend £61m On Expanding Hotel Empire

David and Simon Reuben have spent £61m on a prime central London site which already has full planning permission for a luxury hotel. The Reuben Brothers have purchased 54 and 55-57 Great Marlborough Street, Soho, from Quadrum Global. The site currently consists of 44,000 sq. ft. of space with a 100ft. street frontage. The site was granted full planning permission for demolition and construction of a 63,400 sq.ft. 118 room hotel consisting of two basement levels and seven upper floors back in February. The latest buy follows…

American Billionaires Invest $263m In Expectation Of Brexit Chaos

A trust backed by two American billionaire families is seeking to cash in on Brexit volatility by investing in London property, it is reported. The Van Tuyls and the Stephens families have provided an initial $263m (£200m) for investment through their Firethorn Trust investment company. The trust has already spent $34m (£26m) on the purchase of Quay House, a relatively modest building in Canary Wharf. It is reported they have plans to build a supertall tower featuring a hotel on the site. Founder Peter Mather suggests that…

New Property Portal Claims £2m Valuation After Just Four Weeks

Newbie online property entrepreneur Riccardo Iannucci-Dawson claims his innovative new build property portal is worth £2m just four weeks after opening. Founder Iannucci-Dawson's company, Yourkeys, describes itself as ‘the new way to buy new builds’. The portal enables buyers of new build properties to stay connected to others involved in the purchase including developers, solicitors and contractors. Yourkeys employs 17 and its team includes a number of board members and advisors with extensive property and digital…

Regus Founder Ponders Break Up In Face Of WeWork Rise

The owner of the Regus, Spaces and the No.18 serviced office accommodation brands is reported to be considering splitting the business as the market evolves towards the WeWork model. It is reported that Regus founder and CEO of IWG, Mark Dixon, is proposing to hive off its operating brands from the company's property portfolio with the brands continuing as a standalone franchise. Such a move would pave the way for a potential sale of the property portfolio, worth an estimated £200m. As well as creating value for shareholders…

Purplebricks Boss Wants To Bring Champions League Football To Larne FC

Purplebricks co-founder Kenny Bruce has put his online estate agency on every TV screen, and apparently now wants to do the same with his hometown football club Larne FC. In a recent report Bruce said: "We will do whatever it takes financially to make sure this club has the best facilities possible, gets promoted and is challenging for honours in the (NIFL) Premier League.” And he added, optimistically: "I would like Larne to have the Champions League music played at Inver Park one day." Bruce fulfilled every schoolboy’s…

James Dyson Snaps Up £26m Prime London Building

Sir James Dyson has spent £26m on a prime London office block. An investment company linked to Dyson’s Weybourne Group, which comprises the Dyson Group and Beeswax Dyson Farming, is reported to have purchased 100 Union Street in SE1. The building, providing around 20,000 sq. ft. of high quality, BREEAM Excellent grade A office space is let to a number of businesses and is believed to generate around £1.2m in rent annually. 100 Union Street was completed in 2017. The building’s letting agents describe it as a ‘contemporary…

Property Investor Jamie Reuben Becomes Board Member At QPR Football Club

Jamie Reuben, son of billionaire property investor David Reuben and nephew of David’s equally wealthy sibling Simon Reuben, has been appointed to the board of Queens Park Rangers Football Club. As well as his famous family connections Jamie Reuben, 32, is a successful financier, investor, developer and entrepreneur in his own right. Reuben describes himself as a ‘Londoner, property investor, emerging market speculator, restaurateur/hotelier, football fan and dog lover’. Within London, Reuben has overseen the redevelopment of…

Controversial Landlord Fergus Wilson To Sell Off Entire £100m Portfolio

Large scale and often larger-than-life landlord Fergus Wilson is reportedly to sell off his entire property portfolio, believed to number around 400 properties. In announcing the sale, Wilson blames the difficulty in finding and retaining skilled maintenance staff to look after his portfolio. He says three key staff from Eastern Europe have left for jobs in Europe recently – although he is not sure whether or not this is due to Brexit. Wilson suggests he will dispose of his portfolio gradually, rather than all in one go, as…

Interview: Stuart Williams, The Property Investment Sector’s Rising Star

Stuart Williams is an unusual mix of savvy sales thrust and quietly-spoken understatement which he switches between deftly during my interview with him. Nevertheless while talking to Stuart it was clear that, although he would be loath to admit it, the 37-year-old has all the makings of an emerging star within the property industry. He’s hard to pigeon-hole. Stuart wears the hipster attire of a tech start-up CEO and has an unusual CV that would have most interviewers at Savills or Knight Frank spluttering. But despite all…

PropTech Advisers Join Forces In Newly Funded Start Up

Well-known PropTech advisers James Dearsley and Eddie Holmes have formed a new start-up called Unissu after raising £150,000 of pre-seed funding. Unissu is an online database of companies in the property technology market, which includes information on company size, location, the lifecycle stage of property the tech fits into, a description of the tech involved and the funding it has received. According to Dearsley, the ecosystem is growing quickly but there is no single source to help the property industry understand what…

How An Entrepreneur Built A £1.4M Property Portfolio Before The Age Of 30

Emily Evans’ journey from broken home to property mogul with a portfolio worth nearly £1.4 million is a real rags-to-riches story. What’s even more impressive is that Evans managed to build up her huge portfolio before hitting 30 years-old. She’s bought seven houses and still owns six of them – something the vast majority of Generation Rent can only dream of. Evans bought her first property at the age of 19 and sold it three years later, by which time it was worth £50,000 more than she’d paid for it. Her portfolio is now…

Candy Brothers Accuser Holyoake Paid Them £5.7m In Court Case Damages

Property developer and seafood magnate Mark Holyoake has reportedly paid fellow property entrepreneurs Christian and Nick Candy £5.7m in damages as a result of his failed claim against them. Back in 2011 Holyoake borrowed £12m from former Reading University friend Christian Candy’s company. The cash was to be used to buy and redevelop Grosvenor Gardens House, a Victorian mansion block in Belgravia, for £42m. Soon after, Holyoake claimed, the brothers began to extort money from him by making him sign new agreements changing…