This week, the Frank Salt Real Estate Group gathered in St Julian’s at the Eden Cinemas for the company’s annual AGM. Appropriate to the venue, the presentation was movie-themed and delighted all attendees, with some wonderful surprises along the way!
The evening started with all attendees receiving the must-haves of branded cinema tickets, popcorn and a soft drink, as well as a copy of Mr Frank Salt’s coveted and informative book “Selling Real Estate”, based on his life experience in the industry. Everyone had a turn to walk the red carpet and pose for the paparazzi, showing not only their finery but also their anticipation for what lay ahead that evening!
After being ushered into the cinema, all staff was treated to visuals of blockbuster movie posters featuring….themselves, leading to oohs and ah’s and even a few gasps of delight!
The proceedings kicked off with the Chairman, Frank Salt, welcoming everyone.
In his opening speech he thanked the entire team; from managers, consultants and admin staff to cleaners and the group’s handymen. He said:
“We have the best trained and hard-working team, despite the adverse obstacles thrown at us, and you take pride in the company you work for."
So what’s in store next year?” asked Mr Salt. “Further success created by more hard work and determination” he said. Upon concluding his opening speech, everyone was treated to a surprise clip of Mr Salt starring in the 1991 Wilbur Smith movie “The Burning Shore” as a military officer, filmed partly in Valletta, which certainly entertained the audience!
A series of motivational videos followed, highlighting the importance of resilience and never giving up and turning every opportunity into a success story. Group Director Grahame Salt stated that staff should:
“Constantly work on improving your service levels. Our competitors look at us as the industry benchmark. But you should focus on yourselves and make yourselves your biggest competition to always enjoy better results.”
A review of the company’s performance, followed by objectives for 2022, was presented by Director, Darren De Domenico. “Notwithstanding all the obstacles and adversaries caused by the pandemic, 2021 was another very successful year for the Group and thanks to everyone’s contribution we managed to increase sales revenue by 30%. Letting also had a positive year and once again improved the results over the previous year. These encouraging results were only possible thanks to the hard work and dedication of all the sales and letting team who have the full backing and support of our admin, marketing, HR and IT divisions”.
The company registered growth in the number of overall sales, with the highest increase of 24% being from the local buyers’ market. This was not a surprise, given the fact that 2021 was another COVID year and most efforts had to be channelled locally. Additionally, thanks to the government’s stimulating incentives coupled with Frank Salt’s First-Time and Second Time Buyer packages, business continued its bullish trend in 2021.
Other segments also performed well and interest from foreign clients remained strong albeit not reaching the pre-COVID levels. This obviously had an impact on the company’s letting division. However, thanks to their hard work, revenue nonetheless increased. On the other hand, the company’s property management and home interiors divisions increased revenue by 31%, with the property management division currently managing in excess of 350 apartments!
Frank Salt Real Estate’s Commercial Division also had a record year in terms of revenue and registered an increase of +150% over 2021 which further contributed towards the overall success and profitability of the company.
In terms of marketing, the group recorded an exceptional increase in website and social media traffic as a result of cutting-edge marketing efforts and market-leading strategies adopted by the team. “It is clear that our website remains our number one point of contact with our buyers and we aim to continue enhancing the overall customer experience through this medium”, added Darren.
“Very soon we will launch a new website which promises to be more user-friendly, offering improved client experience and client interaction and the system will also allow us to handle enquiries quicker and more efficiently.”
2022’s main objectives are to increase the group’s sales and letting revenue as well as continue to build strong relations with both vendors and buyers alike. Due to demand levels the company is handling, Frank Salt Real Estate will keep encouraging growth and expansion and is looking to expand its sales and letting teams with more energetic and well trained consultants.
Grahame continued to highlight the fact that the Frank Sal Real Estate Group has a huge marketing operation to promote our database with a team of seven full timers and a massive marketing budget. He went on to mention some of the numerous marketing efforts undertaken by the company last year. “We must constantly adapt and change the way we operate and we must remember that marketing efforts on their own are not enough. The other crucial ingredient for success is executed by you, our sales and letting teams… therefore you have to do your best at all times to deliver the levels of service that we are renowned for and deliver the value our clients deserve”, he stressed.
The Directors also had some fantastic news to share with all team members: the introduction of a Bonus Shares Plan, which represents a reward strategy from the Frank Salt Real Estate Group aimed at benefiting all of its employees. This will allow employees to share in the success and growth of the Group.
This was followed by a presentation introducing Frank Salt Real Estate’s new Real Estate software system. This will have new enhanced facilities amongst which will be cloud access and digitisation of many of the currently traditional “paper” operations.
The AGM concluded with the much-awaited presentation of awards to the highest achievers in sales and letting, as well as to other members of staff who deserved recognition for their outstanding contributions. Amongst the winners was the most coveted of awards, the “Best Branch of 2021” award, which went to the Gozo branch.
The evening wound down with more creative and entertaining clips featuring humorous credits and a trip down memory lane with footage of some of the best company events which took place last year.