Realogy, a mammoth real estate holding company that has struggled on Wall Street, saw its stock soar nearly 25 percent in premarket trading Tuesday on news of a game-changing partnership with Amazon.
At close of business Monday, shares of Realogy stock stood at $5.26, a far cry from around $23 per share a year ago and 2015, when it hovered above $40 per share. But news Tuesday morning of the new Amazon partnership, called TurnKey, may have served as a rallying cry for investors looking for a win from the real estate behemoth.
In premarket trading, the period of trading activity that occurs before the regular market session between 8 a.m and 9:30 a.m., shares of Realogy’s stock shot up 23.79 percent, to $6.40.
TurnKey, which rolls out Tuesday with the heft of a major marketing blitz across Amazon channels and social media sites including Facebook, aims to simplify the process of buying and moving into a new home while also seemingly adding a potentially huge lead generation business to the e-commerce leader’s playbook.
The new platform lives on Amazon’s website. There, prospective homebuyers fill out a brief questionnaire, including the metro area where they want to buy a home. Instantly, the home buyer will be connected to a Realogy-affiliated agent. The platform is live beginning Tuesday in 15 markets, focused on major metro areas and representative of about 20 percent of all homes sold through Realogy-affiliated agents.
By partnering with Realogy, the nation’s largest real estate holding company, Amazon is poised to rise expeditiously in an industry that, until now, it had only touched tangentially, such as through the sale of prefab homes and the development of smart home technology or by investing in prefab homebuilders.
Currently, 3,000 agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker, Century 21, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, Sotheby’s International Realty and ERA Real Estate are participating in the program and have received training from Realogy and Amazon Home Services. The agents selected are chosen based on their customer service record and local market expertise, Realogy Head of Strategy Eric Chesin told Inman. The agent with whom the home buyer is connected is based on the buyer’s profile.