The Federal Trade Commission has cleared CoStar’s planned acquisition of agent software vendor HomeSnap, the companies announced. The $250 million deal is expected to close in the coming days.
“Adding Homesnap to CoStar Group’s network provides significant complementary value to our existing arsenal of broker and agent-centric tools, directly benefiting the entire industry,” CoStar Group founder and CEO, Andy Florance, said in a news release. “We share a common goal of strengthening connections that drive the real estate industry forward.”
With the HomeSnap purchase, CoStar, a heavyweight in the commercial real estate and residential rentals market, will be taking its first steps into residential sales. HomeSnap’s agent software is used by 300,000 residential real estate agents, and Florance has been explicit in his ambition to take on the U.S. No. 1 homes site Zillow.
However, in a conference this week hosted by Inman news, HomeSnap CEO John Mazur gave plaudits to Zillow’s search portal and he emphasized that Homesnap had a different focus on tools for agents.
“For us, we want to give props to Zillow,” Mazur said. “Everyone talks about them on every call and they’re doing so much right and have phenomenal search.”
Although its focus until now has been agent software, Homesnap also powers a consumer-facing marketplace in cooperation with scores of MLSes and real estate brokerages called the Broker Public Portal. Its traffic pales in comparison to major commercial sites, but it will be developed under CoStar’s ownership.
“[BPP] is something we’re committed to, and in the case of CoStar, it’s definitely something they love and are committed to,” Mazur told Inman conference attendees. “Watch this space.”