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Simes Claims Larger Share Of Real Estate Industry

Simes Claims Larger Share Of Real Estate Industry

Christchurch-based real estate company Simes is adding a string of offices and 50 staff to its growing operation, through the purchase of Gillman Edge Real Estate.

Simes chief executive Layne Harwood says the time is right to take a stand in the market as a centralised and established business offering a serious alternative to franchised operations.

“We are always looking for opportunities to offer a broader service,” he says. “Simes is a century-old Christchurch company with a reputation for experience and knowledge across all market sectors.

“Gillman Real Estate was established in 1979 and has grown from a small family-run business to an award-winning real estate agency of six offices including operations in Rangiora, Kaiapoi and Dunedin, all of which will be re-branded as Simes offices. Both companies share the philosophy of providing comprehensive service to vendors alongside credible market understanding.”

Mr Harwood believes the market will welcome the move

“I am aware of soon-to-be-released research showing people desperately want guidance on the market from established and reputable identities,” he says. “People are clearly seeking understanding of the real estate market to help make sense of statistics which are regularly offered.

“One of the reasons Simes is acknowledged as a market leader is we keep ahead of market trends. We have a fulltime researcher on the team looking closely at the Christchurch market, constantly accessing and interpreting the latest local market intelligence to share with clients.”

Layne Harwood says the larger company will offer not only better service for clients, but also a better internal culture for staff.

“From December 1, Simes will have 115 staff,” he says. “I believe blending these two experienced teams of staff who know this market inside out will remind and reassure people we offer sound advice, backed up by years of market knowledge.”

Layne Harwood makes no apology for his corporate view of real estate. His position as South Island president of the Property Council gives him an industry-wide view, as does his well-documented success in Auckland at the head of Barfoot and Thompson Commercial.

“Simes will continue to be aggressive and highly competitive,” he says. “We are business-focused for all the right reasons and people want to deal with a confident and proven company. They want reassurance their agent is working for the vendor and providing the best service possible. A single company focus allows this.”

Layne Harwood says he’s looking forward to Gillman managing director Mitch Goodall joining the Simes management team. “Mitch is passionate about the business of real estate, has high energy and is client-focused, so adding him and his great people to our team will definitely add to our unique market position.”


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