Massive expansion announced by Countrywide

by Gary Whittaker

Countrywide Residential Lettings has announced massive expansion and will open more than 150 offices over the next 18 months.



Part of the growth will be organic but Countrywide also expects to make purchases. The aim is for its lettings business to generate annual revenue of over £100m.



The news coincides with the appointment of Margaret Longden as co-managing director of CRL.



Longden was very much the star at Sequence, where she successfully built up the lettings business, despite having no agency experience. She joined the Connells Group on secondment from its owner, the Skipton Building Society, to co-ordinate Connells’ acquisition of Sequence from Royal & Sun Alliance.



In January 2004, she took on the role of divisional managing director for the lettings division of Sequence, trebling its income and portfolio size, whilst profitability grew fifteen-fold.



In her new role at Countrywide, she will join John Hards, her co-managing director. She will oversee the company’s expansion in the north and midlands, while Hards will manage branches in London and the south.



Longden said: “I’m thrilled to be joining Countrywide during such an exciting time for the business. The pace of change and expansion is exciting and I’m looking forward to working alongside John Hards as we embark on an exciting new chapter for Countrywide.”




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06-October-10General Lettings News