Leading New Zealand horizontal site Trade Me has reportedly reached a conditional deal to buy real estate vertical and data provider Homes.co.nz. According to reports in the country Trade Me will refer the deal to the competition authorities in the next few days and expects to be able to announce more details in the next few months.
Trade Me's Head of Real Estate Alan Clark told local news outlet stuff.co.nz that “Homes has a great suite of tools for New Zealanders interested in property that they've built up over the last few years. As New Zealand’s favourite place for property, Trade Me is always looking for ways to improve and be more useful to Kiwis, so we’re looking forward to Homes being part of Trade Me’s property offering to Kiwis."
Founded in 2014 by current CEO Jamie Kruger Homes.co.nz started out as a data service company but over recent years has developed into a powerful alternative listing site to the two big players Realestate.co.nz and Trade Me's real estate branch. The company employs some 24 people according to Linkedin and is part owned by telecoms company Spark which upped its stake in the firm in 2018.
Since 2018 Trade Me has been owned by British private equity firm APAX Partners who until recently also owned idealista in Spain. If the deal goes ahead it would increase Trade Me's competition with agent-owned Realestate.co.nz which is operated by the 14,000 member Real Estate Institute of New Zealand.