Kevin Kyer doesn’t think of the Listglobally platform he’s just joined as classifieds. He sees it as a force for democratizing information on the internet vertical by vertical.
The former Yahoo executive and “reformed banker”, who formalized his new role as COO with Listglobally last month, argues while real estate information did exist well before the Internet, it was hyper local and not enriched.
“What we are doing at Listglobally is creating a marketplace for international buyers and sellers and we can do it a lot better,” Kyer says.
“There is a lot of fear and uncertainty from the buyer and we need to remove that. Equally, sellers have to see the potential that exists when opening up their marketing internationally.
“The world is getting smaller, not bigger,” he adds.
“I saw this firsthand when I was at Yahoo building out the search marketplace globally.
“If you are only thinking about your local market when you buy or sell any product, it’s a mistake. Some companies get it and are benefitting from this.”
Listglobally partners with Worldposting
Kyer has joined the Listglobally business at an exciting time. It has just partnered with its French counterpart Worldposting (WP).
When the two platforms, which both enable property sellers to market their listings internationally combine, they will operate in over 60 countries, with over 1 million listings worldwide and be generating 100 million visits to their network per month.
As the company’s new COO, Kyer maintains having scale matters to all the participants in the marketplace including resellers, agents, portals and especially buyers.
“By combining our networks, we are building a marketplace that has great reach and provides the breadth and depth to make it healthy and competitive,” he says.
“Partnering with Worldposting is a great first step in our growth plans.”
In practice, Kyer says the two businesses have different pricing and packaging models for agencies to come into their network.
“And, for the most part, we have targeted different partners in developing our respective networks.
“What will be important is for us is to analyze which packaging and pricing is most effective and which partners we don’t have to continue to grow, respectively.”
Banking not for this internet guy
Kyer, who remembers Netscape going public very well, says he did not fully understand exactly what they were building at the time, but could see it was an industry he belonged in.
“I actually started out in banking, but I quickly realized banking was not for me, and switched to the Internet,” he says.
“Since then, I’ve always had a part in it. I began doing business development and marketing with a few startups, and then leveraged that experience for a printing business to grow and expand their Internet among other sectors.
“I then did my graduate studies at Emory University and following that I knew I would go back into a pure play Internet model and Yahoo was perfect for that.
Startup and corporate experience
But Kyer had also rolled up his sleeves with two startups early in his career.
“We had smart people all focused on the same goal,’ he recalls.
“Long nights and weekends, but it was some of the most rewarding work I’ve done. I see that potential here at Listglobally.
Most recently, he led Yahoo’s search and native business across EMEA.
“We were laser-focused on delivering value in the marketplace, especially as we were not the market leader,” Kyer says.
“Working across borders, cultures and timelines for a common goal and vision is challenging but in a good way.
“There is a lot to gain from extracting from different cultures and viewpoints that allows the team to execute better.”
Vision for Listglobally
In his new role with Listglobally, Kyer says what is important to him is momentum, smart people and market traction.
“In market traction, Listglobally, is getting there on few fronts, global syndication and resellers.
“But, we have a lot of work ahead of us to truly scale and grow the business to attract different types of buyers and sellers. And, that is where I will be focusing my efforts.
First up Kyer will work to fully understand all the opportunities and challenges the business faces.
“I am starting to get my arms around that,” he enthuses.
“Second is that we need to be operationally sound on how we work with all parts of our marketplace, whether that’s pricing, offers, onboarding, customer service and the alike.
“But, then we have to balance that with growing faster than we have before.
“Our ambitions are pretty high on what we want to accomplish for the real estate industry in the next few years and we need to show both buyers and sellers just how easy international real estate can be. If we do that well, we’ve been successful.”
Rebrand not yet on the agenda
Right now, Kyer reiterates the WP partnership is just that- and there are no immediate plans to rebrand the business.
“If we see the potential in the partnership, then we can discuss with Worldposting our respective brand architecture,” he says.
“Both companies have high ambitions for growing faster and this partnership is a testament to that.
“We’ve already had many meetings together and it’s clear we have a shared vision about how to grow, how to operate and ensure we build a business of sustained growth.
“There is a ton of online real estate expertise at both businesses and combining that knowledge will get us started,” he adds.
Execution of ideas makes the difference
Kyer argues execution of ideas will separate Listglobally and WP in the marketplace.
“What’s great for the industry is that once the networks are combined it will be much more efficient for the agent to reach even more parts of the world not previously touched by either network,” he says.
“We know it’s a great marketing tool for agents to attract more clients and we also know that buying real estate across borders continues to grow.
“The differences we’ve had between our businesses is who we have targeted and with what offer.
“We have some learning to do to understand which model makes the most sense for the longevity of our respective marketplaces, he says.
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