AWARDS: ERA expands in Singapore and abroad

/ EdgeProp Singapore
October 12, 2018 2:55 PM SGT
Two successive collaborations last month saw ERA Realty Network boost its sales force from 6,210 agents to 6,875 agents. Singapore’s second-largest property agency joined forces with CBRE Realty and HSR International Realtors in the space of a week.
“We have done joint marketing with CBRE and HSR in the past,” says Jack Chua, CEO of Singapore-listed APAC Realty, the parent company of ERA Realty Network. “The decision to collaborate was therefore a natural one.”
Other smaller agencies have also approached ERA to explore the possibility of a collaboration, but “there’s nothing concrete yet”, says Chua. He adds: “It’s a bit like marriage; [we] have to go through a courtship period first.”
Chua reckons the way to raise agents’ income is to invest ‘a lot’ in their training in order to increase their productivity (Credit: Albert Chua/ The Edge Singapore)
According to APAC Realty’s press release on Aug 7, ERA expects 10 projects, or 4,383 units, to be launched from August to December 2018, creating more opportunities for ERA salespersons in 2H2018. ERA had launched 15 projects in the first seven months of this year, or a total of 8,625 units.
APAC Realty posted a net profit of $13.6 million for 1HFY2018, up 8.7% compared with 1HFY2017. The improvement came on the back of a 37.4% y-o-y increase in revenue to $227.3 million. The rise in revenue was largely attributed to higher brokerage income from the resale and rental of properties ($153.9 million) and from new home sales ($68.5 million).
ERA clinched the Marketing Agency Excellence award at this year’s EdgeProp Singapore Excellence Awards on Oct 3.
In 1H2018, ERA achieved an average income of $36,629 per salesperson, or an increase of 41% from 1H2017. Chua reckons the way to raise agents’ income is to invest “a lot” in their training in order to increase their productivity.
ERA has many training programmes in place for the agents. The programmes have been reviewed and improved on by its senior management, who are real estate veterans with an average of over 18 years’ experience. The “Ultimate Agent Training” series, launched this year, includes modules for a skills-based mastery programme, market-focused seminars, and specialised sales and leadership empowerment camps. The objective is to sharpen agents’ industry skills and enable personal development and professional excellence.
APAC Realty said in its press release its agents could benefit from the new features on the Findpropertyagents. sg website and i-ERA mobile app. “These new features help to enhance the overall efficiency of the property buying and selling process, with smart algorithms to connect consumers to the right property agents quickly and accurately, providing users with rich knowledge of property agent statistics as well as property information.”
When the property cooling measures were announced on July 5, ERA was the first agency to update its property investment calculator in the i-ERA app with the new additional buyer’s stamp duty and loan-to-value formulas. This was done within 24 hours of the announcement, says the firm.
Chua says ERA has 200 divisional directors. The divisions vary in size, but each has a minimum of 20 agents, he adds.
Outside of Singapore, APAC Realty holds the ERA regional master franchise rights for 17 countries in Asia-Pacific. It currently has a vast network of more than 18,000 agents across Singapore, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
At end-August, APAC Realty entered into a joint-venture agreement with two Chinese firms, Hainan Zhong Zhi Sheng He Real Estate Investment Consulting Co and Bei Guo Tou (Shanghai) Equity Investment and Fund Management Co. Named ERA Hainan Real Estate Marketing Co, the new JV company will be involved in the brokerage business and train and license property agents in Hainan.\
Chua says APAC Realty has two purposes in entering the Chinese market. “We want to [operate] in the Chinese market and refer our Chinese customers to Singapore properties.”