What is LJ Hooker's Avnu? the much hyped new avenue in real estate

What is LJ Hooker's Avnu? the much hyped new avenue in real estate
What is LJ Hooker's Avnu? the much hyped new avenue in real estate

One of McGrath's top selling Sydney agents, Michael Coombs is tipped to join LJ Hooker's Avnu, a little-known, newly launched, technology-based full-service agency.

Avnu allows agents and customers to manage their sales and properties in real time through digital online software.

Avnu is based in Neutral Bay, on the lower north shore, not far from the Mosman McGrath office which Coombs departed mid-week.

Coombs has privately acknowledge the current "proptech" revolution in the residential market paved the way for how homes would be sold in the future.

Coombs departed McGrath earlier this week.

LJ Hooker picked the lower north shore - where is has operated since the 1950s - to launch the Avnu brand.

With little fanfare, its chairman and local resident L. Janusz Hooker launch the app mid-year.

“It’s your normal LJ Hooker, but it’s a place where technology is driving the process for both agents and consumers," said the grandson of the company’s founder, Sir Leslie Joseph Hooker.

With fewer than 20 sales since its office launch, Coombs could be expected to turbo-charge the office which has the banding: a new avenue in real estate.

One of Avnu's recently listings was an East Killara mid-century design trophy home.

The Harold R. McCauley-designed modernist house was offered through with $1.8 million hopes through LJ Hooker Avnu agent Vanessa Coles, who was previously with Belle Property.

Avnu, run by former Google, Twitter and LinkedIn execs, aims to reshape the homebuyer experience by smoothing the process where there's an estimated 200 steps involved in buying a property, between appraisal and settlement.

It’s a separate entity to the LJ Hooker franchise model and will have its own agents and shop front despite its cloud-based technology approach.

Jason Chuck, the chief executive of LJ Hooker Avnu, was a former local founder and managing director of eHarmony and Houzz, and before that head of marketing for Google.

Ajeya Vempati, former Google Engineering lead, consultant for LinkedIn and Twitter, came on as LJ Hooker Avnu's chief technology officer.

Head of product at LJ Hooker Avnu is James Piskorz.

Christine Mikhael, the former general manager of sales and training at McGrath LNS, has been the director of sales and performance since March. At age 23, Mikhael became the youngest woman in Australia to establish and solely own a real estate agency.

Mr Chuck said the LJ Hooker Avnu platform is the first of its kind and offers the "next frontier of customer service in what is a very fragmented industry".

"If someone was to start a real estate agency today, this is the model they would use. It's a clean slate for what is effectively an industry start-up for the next century," Mr Chuck told Nine Entertainment.

Its customers pay the usual industry-based fees for marketing and agent costs.

Avnu's company registration was preceded by Settl, a thwarted part of LJ Hooker’s $100 million digital transformation. 

LJ Hooker Avnu's early recruits include Adrian Bridges who was ranked in Australia's REB Top 100 agents and recorded more than $120 million in sales last year.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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Lj Hooker Real Estate Agency

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