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LONDON-PrimePitch, the on-line listing service backed by agent Churston Heard has paid £300,000 ($425,000) for a one-third stake in the struggling property trading system Propex. Paul Marples, currently joint managing director of PrimePitch, will become Chief Executive at Propex but the two will continue to operate as separate businesses.

Propex was founded in February 2002 by economist Colin Barber, with venture capital from Internet incubator Brainspark, as a platform for the on-line trading of property investments. It won significant backing from major property players including Scottish Widows, Aberdeen Property Asset Managers, Prudential, Hammerson and Land Securities, who between them bough a one-third stake in the business. But it has been boycotted by agents.

Through its involvement in PrimePitch, Churston Heard becomes the first agent to be involved with Propex. The company said it is discussing a number of incentives to encourage other agents to join.

Ian Reid of Aberdeen Property Asset Managers, Chairman of the Investor Group, said: ‘Now that the Propex system is up and running, this development represents an excellent solution for the company’s future. In particular, it ensures the wide industry participation in the enterprise which the Investor Group was seeking.’

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