I can’t help but look at these announcements from the perspective of the Move team… And the fact that two large brokerages companies (Prudential and Realogy), representing a substantial portion of US listings, appear to have made the mental leap of faith that they are best off syndicating their listings as widely as possible, should serve as one of the clearest warning signs yet that the clock is ticking for realtor.com. My take is that Move and NAR will need to agree to do something interesting with realtor.com soon or risk loosing significant market share going forward.
This interview by Global Property exchange with Simon Baker, who just so happens to be the CEO of News Corporation-owned REA Group, features a few choice quotes about web2.0 start-ups in the real estate space. Here are the two comments that stuck out for me:
“You don’t have to look sexy to deliver.”
“Sites like Zillow.com get a lot of press and they look great but will they deliver? … I doubt whether they do more than US$3 million a year compared to Realtor.com’s US$300 million”
“Outside of Asia, South America and Eastern Europe, my advice [to would-be real estate portals] would be, keep your money. In fact, if you were given £20 million to start a new real estate portal, the best thing to do would be to [not to start the portal at all and] set up a consultancy to take the money from them.”