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Rightmove’s Profit Dips In Q1 FY21: UK

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The FTSE-100 company said its revenue took a hit as it offered a 75% discount to help its agents ride out the impact of the coronavirus lockdown for the period from April to June.

UK property website Rightmove Plc reported a lower first-half operating profit on Friday, as it slashed advertising rates for property agents hammered by an extended halt to property deals due to coronavirus lockdowns.

The FTSE-100 company said its revenue took a hit as it offered a 75% discount to help its agents ride out the impact of the coronavirus lockdown for the period from April to June.

Britain’s property sector came to a virtual standstill in late March and April, in tandem with the global markets as the coronavirus lockdown prevented property visits.

However, the number of sales agreed in England, which eased coronavirus restrictions on the market before other countries in the United Kingdom, jumped after Finance Minister Rishi Sunak’s stamp duty break.

Chief Executive Officer Peter Brooks-Johnson said that new home hunters were coming into the market with changing needs as they reassess their priorities and further incentivised by the temporary stamp duty holiday.

The company said increased number of home hunters have decided to move following their experience of the lockdown.

Rightmove, which has been facing fierce backlash over poor actions taken to help estate agents during the pandemic, said it expects that the further discounts in the second half will have a revenue impact of 35 million pounds ($45.93 million) to 37 million pounds.

The company said its average revenue per advertiser fell 34% to 712 pounds per month for the six months ended June 30, whereas operating profit slid to 61.7 million pounds, compared with 108.2 million pounds last year.

Source: Reuters

(Note: The story has been published without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

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