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Gloucestershire Business News

Merger could create UK’s biggest estate agency

Two of Britain's biggest estate agents are believed to be in talks about a £500m merger.

Countrywide, which owns brands including Taylors and RA Bennett, which both operate in the county, and LSL Property Services, which owns brands such as Your Move and Marsh & Parsons, are discussing an all-share deal, as reported by Sky.

It's not yet clear how close the deal is to going ahead, but if it does, it will create the UK's biggest estate agency group.

A merger will inevitably raise the question of job cuts from the combined workforce of about 14,000 people. With more than 1000 branches between them across the country, the two companies are likely to rationalise their branch network if they merge.

Countrywide is the larger of the two companies, with close to 10,000 employees, but would be the junior partner in any merger because of the lower total value of the company.

The rise of competition from online agents such as Purplebricks and HouseSimple has been an issue across the industry in recent years.

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