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LJ Hooker Avnu sets sights beyond Sydney stronghold

15 August 2019 Reporter
L Janusz Hooker, Christine Mikhael, and Roger Carr

Platform-powered agency Avnu is making a bold move into the Brisbane market, having predicted that the Queensland capital will see property values grow by 20 per cent within three years.

LJ Hooker has announced the opening of its first Avnu Centre in Brisbane next month, with the new office to commence operations with a team of 25 from Ray White Bulimba.

Roger Carr will head up the new offering as the centre’s dedicated sales leader.

He’ll be taking with him a team that includes heavy hitters Tanya Douglas, Mark Diamond and Isa Kural, a statement from LJ Hooker reported.

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Mr Carr said after 12 years with Ray White, he felt it was time for something new.

“LJ Hooker Avnu is pioneering the way real estate is transacted, and when I found out a location was being scouted for its Brisbane expansion, I knew my team and I had to be part [of it],” he explained.

“I’m excited about the cutting-edge tech platform which the company offers. I want to make sure my team and I keep ahead of the market and that we put our clients in the best position to maximise their sale price.”

Noting Brisbane residents as having a growing appetite for fast access to information, instantaneous data and a higher level of transparency and trust, Mr Carr said the platform, supported by premium branding, will be “embraced” in the marketplace.

“I’m looking forward to our future,” he continued.

According to LJ Hooker Group Qld state director Stephen Mutton, the Bulimba location was chosen for its centrality and the prestige real estate market on offer.

“We chose Roger and his team as they were an ideal cultural fit. He has incredible standing in the industry, and he’s built a well-established team that’s dynamic and progressive,” he said.

“When we started discussions with Roger, the deal came together very naturally, and very quickly.”

The company’s chairman, L Janusz Hooker, has also endorsed the Queensland opportunity for Avnu, commenting that “in Brisbane, market data shows property prices could rise by as much as 20 per cent across the city in the next three years”.

“LJ Hooker Avnu will maximise opportunities for customers in this growing market by providing them 24/7 access to live data in the palm of their hand,” he continued.

“We are extremely proud to seamlessly launch our new Avnu Centre with a team that has such a strong track record.”

The full-service agency that is LJ Hooker Avnu was first launched just over a year ago and utilises advanced tools and data to give a transparent view of the journey through a property buy and sell transactions in real time. 

According to the agency, the platform improves agent productivity, job satisfaction and mobile capability by automating many activities that agents undertake.

North Sydney success

It’s been a strong few months for the revolutionary entrant onto the agency scene, with LJ Hooker Avnu having posted $42 million in sales over a two-week period post-election

Avnu’s founding partner, Michael Coombs, said at the time that “with a Coalition government, there’s less uncertainty that the property market will drop further”.

The Queensland expansion comes just over a month after LJ Hooker Avnu announced it had locked in two new recruits in Sydney’s north-west, in a bid to meet significant demand from the “tech-savvy” North Shore market. 

The agency had confirmed Nicole Zeng and Lisa Han as joining the Chatswood office, which has taken the total number of team members to 19.

Before this, Avnu had also announced its expansion into Sydney’s northern districts, with Ben Mulae and his team of two associates coming on board. 

Jason Georges, previously of Ray White Willoughby, was also a successful recruit for Avnu, and his onboarding coincided with the agency’s announcement of holding the biggest real estate market share in Mosman, reported as one of the country’s most valuable suburbs. 

Platform power

It’s also been a busy period for the tech side of Avnu’s business, with the move into the Brisbane market coming just three months after partnering up with proptech provider Managed App.

Managed provides an alternative payment system to the trust account structure, with the company’s director, Thom Richards, noting its capabilities around automating existing workflows and mundane administrative tasks.

This has allowed agency clients “to focus on delivering their own unique approach and methodology that will in turn boost client experience, service levels and investment return”, Mr Richards said at the time.

For LJ Hooker Avnu’s head of property management, Nick Georges, the partnership reflects the agency’s “innovative view of the future of property management” and integrates Managed into LJ Hooker Avnu’s sales technology.

The partnership followed the creation of the Avnu platform, which the chairman, Mr Hooker, said was spurred on by consumer habits.

“The modern-day consumer demands the products and services they consume be delivered in real time,” he had said.

“It’s the right time for Australia’s largest asset class real estate, valued at $7.5 trillion, to deliver on that level of service.”

LJ Hooker Avnu sets sights beyond Sydney stronghold
Avnu LJanusz Hooker Christine Mikhael Roger Carr reb
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