Zillow buys Truila in $3.5 billion stock deal, furthers online challenge to the way homes are purchased
Zillow announced Monday it will purchase Truila, with the deal to be completed at the open of 2015. Both will continue business under their current names, but with Pete Flint, Truila CEO, reporting to Spencer Rascoff, Zillow’s CEO.
The merger of the online companies – in a stock purchase of $3.5 billion – was in part to create further opportunities to leverage ads and sales, allowing for the new combination to approach advertisers with a single, unified plan for marketing.
Despite being the two leading names in the industry for online house hunting, Zillow and Truila combined make up for only about 4 percent of the approximate $12 billion spent overall on all forms – newspapers, TV ads, billboards, etc. – of marketing for the real estate industry.
Looking back a decade for consumers, the array of information Zillow and Truila offer would only have been available to realtors; and even then those consumers would have needed to set up meetings to get information from realtors, further adding to the time invested.
Today, that information is available to any person at nearly any time with an Internet connection, making the seemingly small 4 percent Zillow and Truila represent of the $12 billion in marketing spent yearly likely to increase given the general integration of online use into most people’s day-to-day routines.
That increase in web use for consumers, combined with the potential influence Zillow-Truila could wield, might be the pebble that starts an avalanche of change regarding the antiquated and sometimes rather convoluted system of property purchase historically, and currently, undertaken.
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