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SRE Matrix, and Recreating the Portal Wheel

SRE Matrix has $200 million in funding from Takeshi Sekiguchi, operating a discount model in Hawaii and San Diego, and looking to expand (see Inman).


What are they doing with all that money?

Building another national portal…

The brokerage planned to have set up shop in 14 states by July, but it’s currently only operating in Hawaii and San Diego. It decided to hold off on expansion until it could field a nationwide property search site, Young said.

Led by Lucas Haldeman, a former product manager at operator Move, more than 20 engineers are working out of an office in Scottsdale, Arizona, to have the site ready for primetime sometime in the first quarter of 2017, according to Young.

Much of what I wrote about BPP applies (see articles linked from this page).

When talking about a consumer facing portal, the core question is what are you providing/delivering to consumers they can’t get now? WHY should a buyer (or seller) care? It’s no secret portals that don’t attract buyers don’t last long. I’d love an answer from SRE as to the “why (another portal is needed)“…

About Drew Meyers

Founder of Geek Estate Blog / Geek Estate Labs. Zillow Alum. Travel addict & co-founder of Horizon. Social entrepreneurship & microfinance advocate. Fan of Red Hot Chili Peppers and Kiva.

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  • Drew, in my opinion the question is not why another portal is needed, but rather can they create another portal that gets millions of page views from buyers.

    As an example, Facebook did not look at MySpace and Friendster and say why is another social network needed. They went ahead with their plans anyway, and because they built a better social network, the rest is history.

    I met personally with their billionaire founder twice, and his plan is a good one, but executing it is not going to be easy. Assuming they can build a portal that gets a sizable portion of the market, there is a huge value in that. As you know, Zillow paid $2.5 billion for Trulia, and that would be a nice return on a $200 million investment.

    • Right agreed. Definitely potential upside. It seems everyone just rebuilds what’s already built though. What’s new? Consumers can already do everything the portals do, on the existing portals. Why would they switch? I feel like there is nothing differentiated about any of the “plans” or strategies I hear. Which in sure Zillow is quite happy about, easier for them to remain on top.

      • I believe my website is better than Zillow for my local market. I think I have a lot of users who feel the same.

        Everyone knows Zillow, they do a fantastic job of marketing and SEO. With a marketing budget that Zillow would consider non-existent (last month I spent under $1,000 on PPC), I had just under 30,000 page views yesterday. I believe that proves that users like my website, as it is very easy to click over to Zillow and use them instead.

        Whether SRE can do the same is the $200 million dollar question.

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