The future of Zillow and the acquisition of Trulia was a hot topic at RISMedia’s 2014 CEO Exchange last week, and attendees had a special opportunity to hear from executives from both companies during back-to-back events.
First, during a Networking Luncheon, sponsored by Trulia, Paul Levine, COO of Trulia, assured conference attendees that real estate consumers are still the primary focus for the companies.
“Our focus is creating great solutions for consumers and helping them through a very complex process,” said Levine. “We’ll be helping consumers be more and more informed.”
As recapped by Levine, Trulia was approached by Zillow in early June and by the end of July, the potential merger was officially announced. In August, the companies presented acquisition plans to the government and are now awaiting federal regulatory approval.
Immediately following the luncheon, RISMedia President & CEO John Featherston had a chance to talk shop with Greg Schwartz, chief revenue officer of Zillow, during a special presentation titled: “After the Acquisition: What’s Next for Zillow and Organized Real Estate?”
In each of their presentations, Levine and Schwartz both stressed the importance of technology inside the brokerage and the goal to help make agents more efficient in their deals. In addition, data quality remains of the utmost importance and according to Schwartz, engaging in an open dialogue is crucial to ensure that the companies maintain “up-to-date, beautiful data” across all of their highly trafficked platforms.
Zillow also plans on continuing to build partnerships built on values.
“We want to build the most efficient platform in the history of real estate. It will be a wonderful, vibrant partnership for years to come,” said Schwartz. “We have some expertise in marketing on digital devices. We need to make that expertise work for you as well,” he told attendees.
Having taken place on the same day as Apple’s big iPhone 6 and Apple Watch announcement, Schwartz used the tech giant as an example, citing how each and every Apple product attempts to answer a question: the Mac (How do I create content?), the iPad (How do I consume content?), and the iPhone (How do I communicate with people?).
“If the watch fails, it’s because it doesn’t answer a question,” said Schwartz. “Every single product [of ours] has to answer the master question. That’s fundamental to our innovative machine.”
And what might that master question be? “’What’s your home worth?’ It’s one of the biggest math challenges in the history of math challenges. We have work to do,” Schwartz said, addressing brokers.
“I think we can serve your brands wonderfully and we’ll work really hard to do it.”
Stay tuned to RISMedia for more coverage of this year’s CEO Exchange.