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Zillow Acquires Diverse Solutions – What Does This Mean for Everyone?

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Wow, the Zillow acquisition of Diverse Solutions for $7.8 million in cash and stock is big big news for this industry. I’ve got a unique perspective on this announcement for a few reasons:

  1. At Virtual Results, we work extremely closely with Diverse Solutions. Their dsIDXpress comes standard with every Predesigned Website that Works (dsSearchAgent is optional), and on most of our customs.
  2. I worked for Zillow for almost 5 years & worked with Diverse Solutions as an API partner starting back in 2007 (& 2008).
  3. I happen to be close friends with a few people at Diverse Solutions

It goes without saying that I want to congratulate all those involved. I have many friends at both organizations, so I’m obviously happy to see them join forces. But, what does it mean for everyone involved you are likely wondering?

Zillow

First, this gives Zillow relationships with the roughly 200 MLS’ that Diverse Solutions currently works with. It’s a much easier process to work with one data provider like Diverse Solutions than working with 200 different MLS’ individually. We all know listings quality continues to be a pain in the rear for all real estate portals — one interesting product that will certainly come as a result of this acquisition is a seamless listing syndication program for all Diverse Solutions clients that’s hooked straight to MLS data.

Second, there is certainly revenue growth here for Zillow — the deal gives Zillow the ability to sell Diverse Solutions products to their sizable advertiser base, as both a package deal with Zillow Premiere Agent subscriptions as well as a standalone IDX product.

Third, Zillow gets one step closer to being able to offer agents and brokers everything they need to power their respective online marketing efforts.

Diverse Solutions

There is certainly no question this is a massive win for the team at Diverse Solutions. Being backed by the largest real estate site on the web gives them increased engineering resources, sales and marketing, and just general long term strategic security that they didn’t have before.

Diverse Solutions Clients

I expect Diverse Solutions to get a significant bump in terms of development resources, which should mean better products for clients of Diverse. The holy grail of listing management is for an agent/broker to maintain their listings in one place, and have that seamlessly feed into their entire online marketing; this takes Diverse Solutions clients’ one step closer to that (once a seamless syndication product is integrated).

MLS

The MLS data agreements that Diverse currently has in place will all be honored, so I really don’t think this should be much of an issue for MLS’.

Rob picked up on the hostile interpretation of the acquisition — which is the possibility of a “ZDX” that COULD come at some point down the line. “ZDX” (or whatever you want to call it) would be an IDX experience for agent and broker websites powered by Zillow listings rather than IDX data. So, I guess MLS’ might have something to worry about after all. But, this certainly won’t happen for awhile — if at all.

Now, Zillow just needs an integrated website product and a CRM to be able to give agents and brokers a one stop shop of products to power their entire internet marketing efforts 🙂

What do you think of this acquisition?

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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