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Deal Radar 2008: Trulia Can Consolidate Real Estate

Posted on Friday, Jan 4th 2008

It is raining cats and dogs. Electricity was out this morning and we just got it back. I am very behind in everything, including my writing. But here we go …

Yesterday, we discussed the Kayak-Sidestep roll-up deal, and its implications on Google.

Trulia is a real estate vertical search engine that could be a potential Web 3.0 consolidator for the online real estate category in a similar vein as Kayak is for Travel. Besides vertical search, Trulia also has Trulia Voices, an online community that allows users to have a dialog. Trulia has also released Trulia API and Trulia Widgets, in the spirit of high-traffic sites opening up their platforms to third-party developers.

Trulia raised $10 million in Series C funding led by Sequoia Capital. Other investors were Accel Partners and Fayez Sarofim & Co. This round takes Trulia’s total funding to $17.8 million.

Trulia makes money via advertising. It has also launched a subscription-based service model wherein it charges agents $50 for listings. CPM rates at Trulia vary between $4.69 to $50.00. The Company has an inventory of 25 million ad impressions.

Trulia aims to capture a chunk of the $11 billion (Borrell Associates) spent by real estate professionals and organizations on their marketing in the US. The site lists over 2.5 million homes, 58 million property records and the average time spent by a user on the site is 12 minutes. According to comScore, Trulia, with 3 million monthly unique visitors, is the fastest growing real estate site in the U.S. Hitwise has ranked it as the 18th most visited real estate site. Over the course of this year, their ranking will rise, for sure.

Trulia is a prime acquisition target for large online real estate players like ZipRealty or Move. However, these companies are struggling in the public market right now, and may not be able to offer the level of valuation Trulia would be looking for. Even though the amount of money raised is relatively low (a fact I really like about the company), knowing Sequoia’s investment style, my guess is that their level of ambition is high.

Others who might be interested in acquiring Trulia would be the major newspaper companies (McClatchy, Gannett, NYT) who are losing classified revenues, or the large Internet players (Yahoo, Google, eBay), who are looking at expanding/developing their vertical presence in real estate.

Meanwhile, Trulia itself can become the consolidator of smaller real estate sites, applications, widgets and more, to create a new, compelling, web 3.0 story of its own.

My personal opinion is that they have already differentiated themselves wrt the competition in the online real estate market. While some of the more established companies are struggling as public companies, they are private, efficient, innovative, and on the ball with the new trends.

They should become the consolidator, and not rush to sell out.

This segment is a part in the series : Deal Radar 2008


. MyStrands is MyChoice
. Kayak Consolidates Travel
. Trulia Can Consolidate Real Estate
. Girls Like Stardoll
. LinkedIn Should Roll-Up Jobs
. Zillow
. TheFind
. Wize Ranks Products
. Retrevo
. Piczo Picture Perfect
. Xanga Losing Steam?
. hi5 Going Strong
. Bill Me Later - Blessed by Amazon
. Takkle Tackling Socially
. Amie Street and the Twenty First Century Renaissance
. eHarmony Replacing Yenta
. Zappos Wants to be Amazon When it Grows Up
. Figleaves and Specialty e-Tail
. Twitter Gaining Momentum
. Tagged In Exit Freeze Danger Zone?
. Digg - Packaging news
. Facebook Woes Coming?
. PlayFirst Plays Casual Games Well
. Kosmix+Adify - Potential Google Challenger
. Travel Ad Network Executing Flawlessly
. Adap.tv Trying to Tackle the Video Ad Problem
. Groople, Interesting Use of Context
. Lucidera
. InsideView's Clever Maneuvering
. Seeking Alpha
. Adify's Market Taking Time to Develop
. Glam Media's Fashion Forays
. Federated Media Needs to Focus
. GigaOM
. TechCrunch
. Yelp
. Slide
. Elance
. oDesk
. SKS Microfinance
. TutorVista
. Seventymm
. Cleartrip
. Yatra
. MakeMyTrip
. Intacct
. Genius
. Xactly
. Jigsaw
. Comcast Buys Plaxo
. Encover
. PayCycle
. Bill.com
. Daptiv
. Inform
. PayScale
. Joost
. VideoEgg
. Mercado
. AKQA
. YuMe
. BitTorrent
. Geni
. Blurb
. Mimosa Systems
. Metaweb
. Brightcove
. Revver
. Cake Financial
. Mint
. Powerset
. UpTake
. PaidContent
. Mixpo
. Biz360
. Sabrix
. Coremetrics
. Revision3
. Care.com
. Appirio
. Metacafe
. Pandora
. Hulu
. Fabrik
. Flock
. Wetpaint
. ID Analytics
. Ning
. Telanetix
. Dimdim
. ON24
. Veodia
. Jive Software
. Realtime Worlds
. GirlSense
. LifeSize
. Grockit
. Playfish
. Nurien
. NTR Global
. AmberPoint
. Trion World Network
. PrimeSense
. Verticals onDemand
. Gaia Interactive
. PubMatic
. Mahalo
. Akoha
. Sportgenic
. IVT
. Turbine
. ImageSpan
. Entrepreneur Journeys
. Aggregate Knowledge
. Fliqz
. Elastra
. Challenge Games
. PivotLink
. iForem
. TopTenREVIEWS.com
. Operational Memory LLC,Raleigh, North Calorina
. FeedRoom
. GameDuell
. Fotolia
. EchoSign
. Mevio
. Local Marketers
. Baynote
. BlogHer
. Passenger
. Mobixell
. Wigix
. ExpertCEO
. Zyrion
. Archer Technologies
. SunRun
. NewsGator
. PermissionTV
. Creative Water Solutions
. Carbonetworks
. WiZiQ
. Regent , Frederick,Marryland
. ClickCare
. Studywiz Spark
. Saki Seat
. ShiftWise
. Neulio
. Revolabs

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[…] Real Estate search engine Trulia can be a good trunk to build Microsoft a strong presence in the Real Estate vertical. Valuation: $100-150 Million. Strategy: Acquire another 3-4 vertical portals in Real Estate with a […]

Alt Search Engines » Blog Archive » Microsoft's Shopping List Monday, May 5, 2008 at 2:25 PM PT

[…] the author of this post values Trulia at  $150 – $200 million. Trulia: Real Estate search engine Trulia can be a good trunk to build Microsoft a strong presence in the Real Estate vertical. Valuation: $100-150 Million. Strategy: Acquire another 3-4 vertical portals in Real Estate with a […]

Trulia Valued at $150 - $200 Million-- rentBits Rental Blog Wednesday, May 7, 2008 at 11:06 AM PT

If Realtors were smart, they would stop syndicating MLS listings to Trulia, who uses the data against them in the search engines. Type any #MLS or listing address into Google. I bet Trulia has a couple listings on page 1, while the content author is no where to be found. That’s b/c Trulia uses “nofollow” or redirects back to all Realtor sites. It’s a lose-lose scenario for Realtors and they better wake up!

Ronnie Bredahl Monday, May 19, 2008 at 5:49 PM PT