SINGAPORE - Real estate agency PropNex announced that it would merge with Dennis Wee Group, a move that it said would make it Singapore's largest real estate agency.
The agency said Monday morning (June 12) at a press conference that with PropNex's 5,855 salespersons and Dennis Wee Group's 1,071 salespersons, the total strength of the merged agency would be close to 7,000.
This would edge it ahead of ERA, which had been the largest real estate agency here with 6,243 agents.
Dennis Wee Group had been the sixth-largest group in Singapore before the merger, behind agencies such as Huttons, OrangeTee and Edmund Tie and Company.
Mr Ismail Gafoor, chief executive of PropNex, said that the deal was inked only last Saturday after three days of intense negotiations.
He noted that both brands were homegrown and had an emphasis on its people, adding he was amazed by Dennis Wee Group's family-like culture.
Mr Dennis Wee, chairman and founder of his namesake group, said that he was drawn to the merger as Mr Ismail had been the "most sincere" of Dennis Wee Group's suitors.
He said that the company had been pursued by several suitors since three years ago, and had offers to "double whatever PropNex was offering" just an hour before Monday morning's press conference.
Mr Wee emphasised that he was looking out for his real estate agents, many of whom have been with him for more than 15 years.
He added: "We are both homegrown brands that have grown to be formidable forces in the real estate industry, and I believe PropNex Realty will provide greater opportunities and long-term growth for our salespersons with its proven track track record in the past 17 years."
Mr Ismail said that the companies have signed only a memorandum of understanding, and not a formal contract. There has not been a "dollar value" put to the merger, he added.
He said that having spoken to many of Dennis Wee Group's divisional leaders, he was certain that "80 to 90 per cent" of Dennis Wee Group's agents will join PropNex.
PropNex will be speaking to about 600 Dennis Wee Group agents this afternoon about the details of the transition.
With the merger, Mr Wee will take on the role as PropNex Realty's Senior Strategic Partner and his son Denka Wee will be a Strategic Partner. The transition is expected to be completed by the end of next month.