PropNex’s efforts to engage consumers and developers pay off

By
/ EdgeProp Singapore
|
October 25, 2019 5:00 PM SGT
SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - It has been a busy year for Ismail Gafoor, CEO of mainboard-listed PropNex Realty. On top of managing an agency with more than 8,300 real estate agents, he leads the production of videos for the new project launches of more than 30 that the agency is marketing this year, and has conducted more than 100 consumer seminars so far this year together with other PropNex leaders.
All this has enabled PropNex to reach more consumers to support the sales of newly launched projects, as well as provide business for their agents this year. The agency’s efforts have been recognised by the developers, with PropNex walking away with the Marketing Agency Excellence Award at this year’s EdgeProp Singapore Excellence Awards 2019.
According to the company’s 2Q2019 financial results report, PropNex closed the most number of new units for almost all of the top 10 best-selling projects from April to June this year. These include Parc Botannia, Treasure at Tampines, The Tre Ver, Sky Everton, and Amber Park.
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“While we cannot create a larger home buyers’ market by ourselves, we can capture a bigger proportion of the home buyers who are prepared to buy property,” says Gafoor.
 Ismail Gafoor, CEO of mainboard-listed PropNex Realty. The agency has worked to reach more consumers to support the sales of newly launched projects, as well as provide business for their agents. (Picture: Samuel Issac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
Ismail Gafoor, CEO of mainboard-listed PropNex Realty. The agency has worked to reach more consumers to support the sales of newly launched projects, as well as provide business for their agents. (Picture: Samuel Issac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
One reason for the strong sales performance in the new private homes market is that developers have been setting “sensitive” launch prices, says Gafoor. “Buyers lack the urgency to purchase properties today, and that is understandable [given the market conditions]. The only way to lock in buyers at launch is through sensitive pricing, and we are thankful that developers understand [this],” he says.
Secondly, many consumers make the effort to better understand the property market. “Consumers have kept an open mind to understand the market trends. I believe this is good for them, because they will be able to invest in something with a long-term view that makes sense,” he says.
A bright spot for PropNex is the luxury segment which has performed “exceptionally well” this year, says Gafoor. “The honest truth is we were a bit surprised [about the segment’s performance], because we were very worried when the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) was increased to 20%,” he says, referring to the ABSD increase which formed part of the July 2018 property cooling measures.
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The resilience of Singapore’s real estate market and relatively low luxury property prices compared to other global cities have attracted more foreign buyers, especially those from China, he says. As a result, PropNex hopes to grow its Luxury Team to 500 agents, from the current number of around 300.
A big challenge the market will face next year is the large supply of unsold new units, especially given the pipeline of more launch-ready projects in 2020. Marketing agencies like PropNex will feel the pressure from developers who want their projects sold, says Gafoor.
Beyond Singapore, PropNex wants to establish a strong position within Southeast Asia. Its Indonesian sales force has grown to more than 1,000 in Jakarta and Surabaya, while its Malaysian team has grown from fewer than 100 in 2018 to about 500 currently. Apart from its Kuala Lumpur office, Prop-
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Nex has set up a new office in Johor Bahru this year and will open another one in West Malaysia soon. Gafoor has also set his sights on opening branches in the Philippines, Thailand and Cambodia.
For price trends, recent transactions, other project info, check out these projects' research page: Parc Botannia, Treasure at Tampines, The Tre Ver, Sky Everton, and Amber Park
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