In remarks at Morgan Stanley’s Technology, Media and Telcom Conference Tuesday, CEO Robert Thomson said growing after its sale to CoStar fell through is a “personal priority.”

In these times, double down — on your skills, on your knowledge, on you. Join us Aug. 8-10 at Inman Connect Las Vegas to lean into the shift and learn from the best. Get your ticket now for the best price.

The CEO of News Corp said the company is committed to growing after its sale to CoStar fell through.

In remarks at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telcom Conference at March 7, CEO Robert Thomson says he has made it a “personal priority” to grow after a “flux in the real estate segment” got in the way of a potential deal with CoStar, according to a report by Real Estate News.

Robert Thomson. Credit: News Corp

“We remain open and opportunistic,” he said. But “we have no intention of being the Miss Havisham of housing,” referring to the wealthy spinster from Great Expectations who insists on wearing her wedding dress decades after having been jilted at the altar.

Thomson said News Corp had no intention of parting with before they were approached about it.

“To be clear, we had no intention of selling Realtor, but we were courted and wooed with a significant sum,” he said.

CoStar acknowledged in January that it had been in talks to purchase the listings portal from News Corp for $3 billion. The move was seen as an attempt for the commercial real estate giant to challenge Zillow’s dominance, which it had been openly critical of in recent statements, and to further its foray into the residential real estate space.

The talks also came as it was revealed that News Corp took a hit during the final quarter of 2022, with revenue for MOVE, which operates, falling $14 million or 23 percent, driven by an overall slowdown in the real estate market due to high mortgage interest rates. News Corp announced plans to lay off approximately 1,250 people during the same earnings report.

During an earnings call in February, however, CoStar CEO Andy Florance revealed in a surprise announcement that CoStar would not be following through on the purchase after all.

“At this point, CoStar is not acquiring,” Florance said on the call, adding that “we continue to believe that the business model and principles are well aligned with [National Association of Realtors] members and real estate agents generally.” leases the trademarked Realtor name from the National Association of Realtors but operates completely independently of it.

During his March 7 remarks, Thomson said that News Corp’s United States media outlets, which include the Wall Street Journal, Fox News and the New York Post would be used to promote moving forward.

“It shows how much we believe in the future of Realtor,” Thomson said.

David Doctorow, CEO of MOVE, said at the same event that the company’s focus has remained the same even as talks of new ownership have been in the air.

“We are confident in the course that we have laid out in front of us,” Doctorow said. “As we move forward, we will remain laser-focused on helping consumers feel confident by giving them personalized options and the power to choose them, and empowering the growth of customers by offering a choice of best-in-class solutions that meet their business needs.”

“Unlike our competitors who push their own products,” he added, “our open marketplace empowers consumers and customers with confidence by allowing them to choose the products and partners that are best for their real estate journey and business.”

Email Ben Verde
Show Comments Hide Comments
Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Only 3 days left to register for Inman Connect Las Vegas before prices go up! Don't miss the premier event for real estate pros.Register Now ×
Limited Time Offer: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $199SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription