News Corp, operator of the popular Australian real estate portal realestate.com.au and many other media outlets across the globe, is set to acquire realtor.com operator Move Inc. for $950 million in cash.
The pending acquisition, unanimously approved by Move and News Corp’s boards, comes just two months after the merger announcement of Move’s chief competitors, Zillow and Trulia.
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“This partnership will help shape the future of real estate,” said National Association of Realtors President Steve Brown in a statement. Move has an exclusive agreement with NAR to operate realtor.com that dates back to 1996. Realtor.com is Move’s flagship product and service.
“We intend to use our media platforms and compelling content to turbocharge traffic growth and create the most successful real estate website in the U.S. We are building on our existing real estate expertise and expect to leverage the potential of Move and its valuable connections with Realtors and consumers around the country,” said Robert Thomson, CEO of News Corp, in a statement.
News Corp, known for its Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch, owns many high-profile media brands across the world, including the Dow Jones, The Wall Street Journal, HarperCollins Publishers and The Times. It also holds a 61.6 percent stake in REA Group Limited, operator of realestate.com.au.
When the acquisition closes, REA Group intends to hold a 20 percent stake in Move.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for REA Group to invest in a leading player in the largest real estate market in the world,” said REA Group CEO Tracey Fellows in a statement. “We see strong growth potential for Move, given the size of the U.S. market, the significant proportion of real estate advertising yet to move online, and recent industry consolidation.”