Today’s front page of The Financial Review, Australia’s leading financial newspaper, carries the heading “Real Estate Agents Revolt”. The lead in paragraph says “The country’s largest real estate companies are shaping up for a fight with online marketing giant REA Group over the soaring cost of advertising on the web and the rights to the use of property data.” The news immediately wiped off 5% or $80m from REA’s market cap – ouch! Now this raises an interesting discussion about can a fragmented industry unite to create a true competitor to a market leader or is this just fantasy? The
HomeAway has announced that the price range of its initial public offering will be between US$24 and $28 per share, valuing the company at $2 billion. The vacation rentals company recently revealed that it reached profitability in the first quarter of this year, and now says it is aiming to raise up to $248 million in the offering. The HomeAway network of sites includes homeaway.com, VRBO.com and vacationrentals.com in the US, homeaway.co.uk and ownersdirect.co.uk in the UK, homeaway.de in Germany, abritel.fr and homelidays.com in France, homeaway.es in Spain, and aluguetemporada.com.br in Brazil. In April, HomeAway added an Australian portal to this
Hitwise figures for May have realestate.yahoo.com first among US real estate websites, bumping realtor.com out of the number one spot. The difference between the two sites is marginal, with realestate.yahoo.com taking a 6.51 percent share of the market compared to realtor.com's 6.46 percent. zillow.com remains in third place with 5.69 percent, followed by trulia.com with 4.77 percent. Between fifth and 10th place, frontdoor.com made the biggest gains, going from number 10 to number six. realestate.aol.com was unable to maintain the traffic it attracted last month, dropping from fifth to ninth place. 1. realestate.yahoo.com (Previous ranking: 2) 2. realtor.com (1) 3.
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Each week, we take a look at the top stories in real estate technology from the past seven days. Here are the latest stories from around the world: Mobile real estate app provider Smarter Agent received a US$6 million funding injection, which brings the company’s total funding to $18 million. The company says this new funding will go towards to developing its mobile search platform and new hiring. Point2 was busy again this week with the release of its Express Tools product, which the company says has been designed with new agents, non-technical agents and those who require specific, scalable tools in mind. Point2
realEstate1 says it is planning to continue to fight for the right to use the term "real estate" as part of its trademark, reporting that mediation with realestate.com.au has broken down. The two portals went into mediation earlier this year after realestate.com.au launched legal action, claiming that it was moving to protect its brand. "It is disappointing that the REA Group is continuing with their legal action against realEstate1," says Geoff Luff, the portal's managing director. "However, we look forward to a favorable outcome." realEstate1 says a court date has not yet been set. realestate.com.au did not respond to a
zoopla.co.uk has signed an exclusive deal to power the property search feature on aol.co.uk, which went live yesterday. aol.co.uk owns a portfolio of brands - including Walletpop and Daily Finance - where daily property related articles will automatically incorporate zoopla.co.uk's property search functionality. The deal therefore means that all properties listed on zoopla.co.uk will also be available on aol.co.uk. aol.co.uk joins a list of UK websites partnered with zoopla.co.uk that includes MSN, Yahoo, Sky, UpMyStreet and homes24.co.uk, which was relaunched by zoopla.co.uk in March. "We are delighted to add AOL to the list of websites that we partner with," says
squarefoot.com.hk is now available in simplified Chinese, opening the portal up to mainland China's Internet audience. The Hong Kong portal first went bilingual in July last year, but says it now wants to attract visits from an audience that has "the most buying power around the world." squarefoot.com.hk's marketing manager says the portal has recently hit a new unique visitor record of 120,000 for May. According to parent company REA Group's 2010 financial results, squarefoot.com.hk "significantly reduced" its losses and refocused its operations last year. The portal released an iPhone app in May, which is also available in English and
euroinvestor.com A/C, the majority stakeholder in top Scandinavian property portal network Boliga, has appointed Jeff Saul as its new CEO. Since February 2009, Saul has been head of group equities in Saxo Bank A/S, and in March 2009 became a member of euroinvestor.com's Board of Directors. He has been responsible for Saxo Bank's investment in euroinvestor.com, and drove the development of "MSN Trader powered by Saxo Bank" in association with Microsoft. euroinvestor.com says current CEO Jens Alminde will continue his engagement in the company and focus on developing the Danish business, including the Boliga network. "That we have been able to attract Saxo Bank's global head of
immobilienscout24.de is opening up its commercial property marketplace to foreign investors, offering "unprecedented access" to the German property market. The top German property portal launched the CommercialNetwork marketplace earlier this year for investment buyers looking for properties over €5 million. It works by matching investors with suitable properties and allowing buyers and sellers to negotiate through a number of anonymous contact stages. immobilienscout24.de says it is now targeting international investors searching for German properties and foreign portfolio holders selling properties in Germany, and has launched an English language version at commercialnetwork.co.uk. “International investors are currently focusing much more on the German property