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Purplebricks gets boost as Axel Springer raises stake to 12.5 per cent

City A.M. Monday, 9 July 2018 ()
Purplebricks gets boost as Axel Springer raises stake to 12.5 per centGerman publisher Axel Springer today said it had raised its stake in UK online estate agent Purplebricks to 12.5 per cent. 

A note from Purplebricks said Berlin-based Axel had bought an additional 3m shares for £3.07 each after it took an 11.5 per cent stake in the company for £125m in March. 

"We still view this as an innovative business model that allows us to participate in new markets," a spokesman for Axel Springer said. 

"It is possible that we increase the stake further but there are presently no concrete plans to that end."

The extra investment will give Purplebricks a welcome boost as it looks to rapidly expand into the US market. 

It recently announced the acquisition of Canadian real estate firm DuProprio for £29.3m as part of its major expansion push.

*Read more*: Purplebricks follows up US expansion with move into Canadian market

Last week, shares in Purplebricks tumbled five per cent when it announced widening pre-tax losses due to higher marketing and expansion costs. 

Purplebricks and other online real estate companies are looking to take on established names like Countrywide and Foxtons in the property market. 

It is currently the top online estate agent in the UK, although it could face fierce competition from Emoov, who in May announced it would acquire rivals Tepilo and Urban to create a sizeable rival in the market. 

*Read more*: Property group Emoov to join forces with Tepilo in £100m merger
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