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Entrepreneurs

Plymouth’s Iconic Drake’s Island Sold

The island in Plymouth Sound from which Sir Francis Drake set sail to circumnavigate the globe in 1577 has been sold to the boss of a local specialist construction company, a local press report says. The 2.6 ha Drake’s Island has been on the market since late 2018 with an asking price of £6m, although the eventual selling price has not been disclosed. The island has been bought by Morgan Phillips of Guardian Industrial UK (GIUK). It currently has planning permission for use as a hotel and spa, although Phillips has

Flatfair Raises $11m For Expansion

Proptech company Flatfair has raised $11m in a funding round led by Index Ventures, and which will be used to help expand its deposit-free renting platform. Flatfair says the funding will help it to scale ‘far and wide’ in order to bring deposit-free renting to everyone, while it is also planning a major recruitment drive to expand its team from 25 to 100. Franz Doerr, Flatfair CEO, spoke to Dealmakerz recently about his ambitions for Flatfair. Commenting on the deal Martin Mignot at Index Ventures, which has a

Reuben Brothers On Majorca Buying Spree

Property moguls David and Simon Reuben seem to be engaged on something of a buying spree in Majorca, having bought up several prime parcels of land there this year. The Reubens' latest purchase is a 214 ha plot near Cala Mesquida in the Capdepera municipality in the north east of the island, reports say. The plot includes two villas and a 1.3km sea frontage. The brothers are said to have bought two further separate seafront plots in January and February this year, in the Manacor and Arta districts, and the latest

Issa Brothers’ EG Group Makes Major US Investment

EG Group, the business founded and run by property moguls Mohsin and Zuber Issa, has agreed to buy US company Cumberland Farms which operates 600 fuel stations and convenience stores across seven US states. The acquisition maintains EG Group’s position as the world’s leading independent fuel station and convenience retailer, operating around 5,000 sites across 8 countries including the US and Europe with annual revenue around $20bn. Mohsin Issa, Founder and Co-CEO, EG Group said: “Whilst we believe EG can add a

Chesterman’s Cazoo Is ‘One To Watch’ Experts Say

The used car business being set up by one-time Zoopla founder Alex Chesterman is one of the upcoming motor retail and mobility start-ups to watch, so says AM Online, a motor industry website. Tom Seymour of AM Online says that forward-thinking automotive retailers are looking at mobility services and new ways to evolve the customer journey over the next decade and a number of new start ups are vying to dominate the market of which Chesterman’s new venture is one. Cazoo, which is expected to launch later in 2019, will

GuestReady Makes Top Ten In Startups 100 Index

GuestReady, the global short term rental management company, has been listed at number 9 in the UK’s top 100 Startups index of new disruptive businesses launched in the last five years. It was the only hospitality/travel startup that made the top 10 beating off stiff competition, including from its direct competitors and companies like Airsorted and Hostmaker. GuestReady offers premium property management services to property investors, homeowners and Airbnb hosts to boost the success of their properties on the

Peel Group’s Whittaker ‘Liquidating His Stakes’

John Whittaker, Executive Chairman of The Peel Group, is liquidating his stakes in Peel Ports and Liverpool Airport, The Times newspaper claims. The newspaper says that Whittaker is taking this action as his “finances have been stretched” by the “plummeting value” of shopping centre owner Intu Properties due to the current “retail bloodbath”. Peel Group owns 27.3% of Intu and its share price has declined by around 70% in three years. Whittaker, ranked 77th in the latest Sunday Times Rich List with a fortune

Trump Used Royal Family To Promote Developments, Claims

US President Donald Trump used the British Royal family to ‘gin up’ publicity for his property developments for a number of years, CNN claim. The report alleges that between 1981 and 1995 multiple claims that members of the Royal family were joining Trump properties, which likely originated from Trump himself, appeared in New York tabloids and national papers. These included a 1983 claim that Prince Charles and Princess Diana were planning to buy a $5m apartment in the then newly launched Trump Tower in New York. The

Vincent Tchenguiz Now Investing In Biotech

Property tycoon Vincent Tchenguiz’s latest investment outside the property world is in biotechnology, it is reported. Tchenguiz is said to be investing $7 million (about £5.5m) in BioProtect Ltd. Israel-based BioProtect has developed a proprietary technology platform for biodegradable balloons which can be used to protect healthy tissue from radiotherapy during the treatment of prostate cancer. With the product already launched in Europe it is reported that this latest funding round will help finance clinical trials

Tchenguiz Supports First Group Revolution

Property tycoon Robert Tchenguiz has told a newspaper that he is supportive of a campaign to remove the current board of bus and rail operators First Group Plc. Tchnengiz has bought 0.5% of the shares of First Group recently and has apparently told the newspaper that he supports the activities of its biggest investor, Coast Capital, who are trying to install their own choice of directors. He explained to the newspaper: “Coast is not trying to take control of this company, all they're trying to do is highlight that

High Profile Appointments At Chesterman’s Cazoo

Cazoo, the used car buying platform being set up by Zoopla founder Alex Chesterman, has made three high profile appointments, all with extensive experience in the sector. Former Auto Trader UK Sales Director Kevin Harding has been appointed as Pricing Director. Tesla’s former General Manager Remarketing will become Operations Director, while Manheim's former Vehicle Solutions Director Bryan Stringer will join as Head of Operations. Cazoo’s Chief Commercial Officer Paul Whitehead says: “We’re delighted to welcome

Mayfair Best Place In World For Property – Caudwell

London’s Mayfair is the ‘best part of the best capital in the world’ from a property development point of view, according to mobile phone and property tycoon John Caudwell. Speaking to Spears Magazine as his own ultra-luxury Mayfair development progresses Caudwell suggests that Mayfair holds this lofty status as demand for high end property there exceeds the supply of developable space. He also suggests that Brexit will not affect the development potential in Mayfair, although any future Jeremy Corbyn government could.

Where Property’s Heavyweights Go After They Quit The Boardroom

Not every boardroom or senior property industry executive wants to or can stay at the top for good. The pressures of internal politics, ambitious targets and a volatile housing market persuade many to look for job satisfaction away from the hurly burly of corporate life. But where to? The most recent example is Graham Lock, the former managing director of estate agency giant The Property Franchise Group (TPFG), who revealed last week that he was establishing a trade body. Called the Federation of Independent Agents

Nick Candy Facing £1.5bn Claim Over £160m Penthouse

Property tycoon Nick Candy is facing a £1.5bn legal claim, it is reported. A story in the Daily Mail says that the claim is being made by company director Michael Brown who was involved with a prospective sale of Candy’s £160m penthouse at One Hyde Park, London. The property is said to be the most expensive flat in Britain. Candy took out a £80m mortgage on it last year, thought to be one of Britain’s largest ever residential mortgages. The report says that a spokesman for Nick Candy denies the claim and believes