US commercial real estate giant CoStar Group has announced that it has acquired COMREAL INFO, the owner and operator of French commercial real estate portal BureauxLocaux.com for an undisclosed sum.
Based in Paris, BureauxLocaux was founded in 2008 by Sophie Desmazières and is one of the leading specialist portals in France with some 60,000 listings, 425,000 monthly visits and a staff of 22 according to Linkedin. The portal claims that 90% of the country's top commercial brokers are its clients and that traffic has increased by 30% on a compounded annual basis since the beginning of 2018.
Apart from its operations in the United States where it is the leading player in commercial real estate, CoStar Group also owns Spanish commercial portal Belbex.com and British commercial portal Realla. The addition of a similar French portal complements the firm's international strategy according to CEO Andy Florance:
"The acquisition of BureauxLocaux is an important step in continuing our international expansion, France is one of Europe’s largest commercial property markets with an estimated €40 billion in annual investment transaction value. BureauxLocaux has built a leading commercial property-specific listings platform with national coverage, great brand recognition, and an excellent reputation among its clients."
Sophie Desmazières, BureauxLocaux’s Founder, added, “We are excited to become part of CoStar Group. The commercial property vertical deserves a high-quality sector-specific online marketplace to better serve brokers and owners. Supported by the extensive resources and know-how of CoStar Group, we believe we can accelerate BureauxLocaux’s growth and strengthen its market position in France.”
CoStar may be looking outside of its native market due to the increasing scrutiny with which mergers and acquisitions are being viewed by new FTC boss Lina Khan. In December 2020 the company was forced to drop its proposed acquisition of American portal operator RentPath and just last week CoStar's rival Zillow closed on its $500M acquisition despite the FTC stating that it was investigating the deal and that the two parties were closing at their own risk.