Fairfax Media has reported that Ray White co-chairman Brian White has drafted a letter to its 635 franchises nationwide recommending they sign up with REDMS.
REDMS already has 400 agency members, most of which are in Victoria. Ray White – with its national focus – would give the burgeoning portal significant clout against its News Corp-owned rival who, it’s claimed, is gouging agents on rates.
“We have certainly spoken with the drivers of REDMS,” Mr White was quoted as saying in Fairfax Media last week.
“We think it makes sense to professionalise the financial arrangements between the agents that provide the advertising and the digital deliverers.
“We think it would be fantastic for the individuals to be able to speak with one voice.
“It would surprise me if it didn’t make sense for the other big franchises to embrace this philosophy,” Mr White said.
However, Mr White’s comments to Fairfax Media need to be taken in context in what could be construed as a tit-for-tat war between it and arch rivals News Corp (who owns a 61.6 per cent stake in REA).
News Corp has questioned the legitimacy of REDMS due to its links to Fairfax Media.
On Friday, the News-owned The Australian, under the headline ‘Digital group retreats in real estate row’ again accused REDMS of a “campaign of misinformation in the property sector after distributing misleading advertising”.
The article went on to say “REDMS’s activities have attracted the attention from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which is considering launching an investigation into the real estate sector”.
It would appear this stoush – and its threats of legal action – has a long way to run yet.