Newsflash – Fairfax buys

Fairfax today purchased for an undisclosed amount.This now leaves only 2 players in the Commercial Real Estate space in Australia with purchasing Propertylook for a cool 9 million recently.

I just got hold of a press release from an avid reader of business2 (thank you Phillipa) and it details the sale (no mention of price as yet).

Apart from the usual fare the newsletter states that “arguably no other media organization (I hate American spelling) in Australia has as much experience and credibility when it comes to real estate advertising than Fairfax”. Hmmm, arguably being the operative word, although Fairfax has had the traditional newspaper advertising market sewn up for as long as living memory – the Internet however is a different story. Anyway this release also states that the relationship will bring even more enquiries for listing agents. This is true, Fairfax will no doubt take advantage of the name and more than likely integrate their own look and feel to the website. I doubt very much they will discontinue the site and integrate it into Domain as it is the number one domain name for this space.

As for agents costings, well, less competition means higher prices and it will be interesting to monitor the pricing agents are charged for this service, my guess is they will leave it as is for the time being, and look to increase agency participation first by promoting it in their newspapers across Australia.

The owner of was again unavailable for comment. (again)., Domain, Fairfax

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About Peter J Ricci

Peter Ricci is the Director of,, and and has been involved in designing and developing real estate systems and websites since 1997. In July 2001 Peter founded to help real estate agents better understand the power of the Internet and the real estate landscape in Australia and New Zealand. Since then he has penned over 300 articles on a variety of subjects in the real estate technology industry. is now the leading real estate technology site in Australasia.

13 Responses to Newsflash – Fairfax buys

  1. Michelle May 7, 2006 at 9:25 pm #

    Hi Peter – I love reading your news articles. It is refreshing to see someone take an interests in agents in Australia. I am confused about this voting thing though. What makes a good article and how do people vote?

    Michelle W – Castle Hill NSW

  2. peter May 7, 2006 at 9:29 pm #

    Hi Michelle

    Thanks for the compliment – it is always nice to hear from people like yourself. As for the voting, well it is a freedom thing – allows people to let me know what they thing of my articles. Some like for this one are very low – but sometimes I get a high score. It does confuse me as to how this one can be so low though, as I am only reporting information, not really stating an opinion. But that is the beauty of this medium, people have the freedom to tell me what they think. As for comments I get, I post nearly all of them unless they are crude or defamatory – and I do get a few of them. Most people who post crude comments, do not provide their real name or email address.

    But all in all I love comments – good or bad!

  3. Shane T May 8, 2006 at 7:59 am #

    I suppose we only have ourseles to blame, believing all of the hype and supporting the major portals. So what do we get in return? Forever rising prices, competition amongst each other for higher ranking in listings (even more money). I blame the real estate institues for backing these sites. It really grates at me that news limited and fairfax will now own our advertising budget on the Internet.

    Are there any other options out there?

  4. Bryan May 8, 2006 at 3:59 pm #

    I am an agent and i just dont get the paranoia i am reading on your site.

    My business is so much better off because of the internet. I used to buy pages in the paper but dont any more. That has saved me $1000’s each month.

    I have my own site and subscribe to portals. All up it costs me is around $800 per month (for my site plus portals) to advertise my 20 or so listings. That’s only $40 per listing per month. How cheap is that?

  5. peter May 8, 2006 at 10:57 pm #

    Hi Bryan

    Thanks for your message. This site is to inform agents about the Internet and the goings on in the industry. It is not about trying to scare people into distrust. If you read many of the articles it is about information for agents. As for the comments posted here, I encourage people to discuss their thoughts – good or bad and don’t pick a choose from comments made. I agree that the Internet is amazing value and if you read many of my articles I encourage companies like yours to put their heart and soul into making the Internet work for them. You are amongst a growing legion of agents turning away from traditional media, and I am sure this will hold you in good stead for the future. Thank you again for your comments and keep them coming!

  6. Anonymous May 10, 2006 at 10:16 pm #

    From the rumour files …

    Rumour has it that Fairfax paid around $5m for

    Rumour also has it that had around 200 customers paying around $200 per month … so that is $500k in revenues … did they really pay 10 times revenues?

    Rumour also has it that many of the customers are not happy that Glen has sold out …

    So what has Fairfax really purchased?

  7. Peter May 11, 2006 at 12:33 pm #

    Well these are just rumours, 10 x revenues is not uncommon for these types of sites, in fact many companies are paying up to 15/20 times revenues. You also have to think about the future, I think this is a good move by Fairfax. As for the unhappy customers, well I doubt anyone would begrudge a person selling his company for a profit to secure his future.

  8. Anonymous May 11, 2006 at 2:45 pm #

    More from the rumour file …

    aparently paid 6 times revenue for propertylook – from their prospectus on the ASX today

    Also from the rumour file …

    It is rumoured that fairfax is launcing domaincommercial and will run it along side commercialrealestate and agents can pay to be on both or just one

    i wonder how that will work?

  9. Peter May 11, 2006 at 10:44 pm #


    You certainly have some good inside information – or maybe not. I cannot comment because I do not know. But and domaincommercial in my view would only confuse the market, so I would doubt this to be a sensible long term strategy. However I don’t doubt that is could be possible. As for the speculation on price – I cannot comment on rumours. You appear to be very well read on these subjects, so you may well be right. Time will tell. My only real c oncern is the impact on agents, and it will be interesting to see if some real competition emerges for realcommercial.

  10. Another Victoria Agent May 12, 2006 at 12:09 pm #

    real competition for realcommercial ? you’re joking right ?
    commercialrealestate has always delivered better results than realcom, no comparision, commercialrealestate is the best commercial site in australia, I know from my own experience and that of others I know

  11. Peter May 12, 2006 at 5:21 pm #

    Opinions may differ as to who gets results, but history shows that consumers eventually go to where the content is, and have the majority of content.

    I think the site needs a hell of a lot of work done on it to bring it up to the standard of its residential twin but when they do this, they will be very hard to stop.

    I really do hope through can challenge them.

    After all good competition means lower prices for real estate agents!

  12. Another Victoria Agent May 12, 2006 at 6:46 pm #

    No, you’ve got it wrong. I search for property for clients as well as advertise.

    All the good content is on commercialrealestate, realcommercial only seems to have low grade listings from residential real estate agents.

    Now they have propertylook, another 2000 listings ? so what ? won’t make a lot of difference to me.

    Now that commercialrealestate is owned by Fairfax it will go further ahead no doubt and I doubt realcommercial will ever catch them now.

    Competition is good I agree, the problem for agents like me is that commercialrealestate will surge even further ahead and there may not be any competitor worth a mention and I hope that doesn’t efect prices too much.

  13. Ilya March 2, 2009 at 4:14 pm #

    That site still ranks remarkebly high on Google. They’ve done a good with it.

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