SOBOX + PropertyAd Guru have closed their doors

After less than 18 months SOBOX.com.au has recently closed its doors. At its launch SOBOX (Short for Social Media in a Box) a wholly owned subsidiary of Classified Ad Ventures Pty Ltd promoted the importance of agents having a deeper involvement with social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Property Ad Guru has also “gone on Hiatus” recently as well, and we we only have to guess that this has also been closed permanently as not many companies go on ‘hiatus’ if things are going well.

At the launch Simon Baker the CEO of Classified Ad Ventures, said:

Social Media is an important marketing tool for Australian real estate agents and all agents should have a strong presence on the main sites – Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. We launched SOBOX to help Australian agents get the most from social media and to reduce their reliance on traditional and other online media when marketing themselves and their listings.

It seems SOBOX found the going a little tough and we received reports detailing how only a few agents had actually signed up for the service over the past 18 months. These customers have apparently since been notified of the closure and have received all of their data to export into a new service.

One of the problems with SOBOX is that agents could actually get most of the same or similar offerings for free or for a nominal monthly fee with little effort, which highlights another problem facing new companies feeding to social media websites. Most providers today actually do the same services as a part of their overall web design service as nearly all new real estate sites also have a blog and social media integrated.

Classified Ad Ventures Pty Ltd has seen a number of projects close over the past 12 months with many of the previous offerings no longer available or merged into a more streamlined service and it seems the company is now focussing on providing a smaller core suite of products to real estate agents, including search, web services, content delivery and also web development.

Another of their offerings List Globally (which I think is a great idea) may also be struggling to get the numbers needed – primarily because I think it is too expensive, I still cannot get my head around their pricing. For such a great idea, I would have thought if List Globally was a completely automated service they could drop the price dramatically and get the volume they needs to have the success it warrants.

No one doubts the talent and reach of the team and particularly Simon Baker, he has proven in the past he has the experience and connections to make things happen, however for every success in online technology we each experience a number of failures along the way and having success in one area doesn’t always guarantee success in another.

Property Portal Watch seems to be still growing strong with regular updates which I follow closely. It is a good website to follow if you are interested in all the happenings of real estate portals worldwide. They seem to have expended this service into directories as well.

Todays economic climate is not easy on new web service companies and hiring the right talent often is the biggest ongoing expense, you add servers, maintenance and traditional business costs you can find yourself needing revenues almost immediately.

Classified Ad Ventures, Property Ad Guru, Simon Baker, Sobox

SEO For Real Estate
Listing Leads
Agentpoint Real estate

About Peter J Ricci

Peter Ricci is the Director of Agentpoint.com.au, Business2.com.au, Ginga.com.au and ZooProperty.com and has been involved in designing and developing real estate systems and websites since 1997. In July 2001 Peter founded Business2.com.au 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. Business2.com.au is now the leading real estate technology site in Australasia.

41 Responses to SOBOX + PropertyAd Guru have closed their doors

  1. Glenn Rogers October 19, 2011 at 10:02 am #

    Simon Baker had the right idea, perhaps agents just aren’t social media aware enough to give it a go.

  2. Andy Del Vecchio October 19, 2011 at 10:22 am #

    Oh, is that what SoBox was…? and what exactly was classified ad ventures , because i could never tell.
    maybe there is a lesson there…
    not meaning to be facetious there, but i really never could work out what classified ad ventures was all about.
    However, Property Portal watch is a valuable blog and I hope it continues Mr Baker!

  3. Andy Del Vecchio October 19, 2011 at 10:24 am #

    whoops….i should have read more carefully!!!
    Classified ad ventures is still going…
    i will get back in my box! 🙂

  4. Bill October 19, 2011 at 10:26 am #

    From my experience with agents it’s a real challenge to educate them on the merits of social media and how it will benefit their careers especially if the education is being presented via a website. Agents I know just don’t seem to have the time or inclination to study or learn online.

    The result changes if agents are being educated one on one or in workshops and I’m sure Greg Vincent can substantiate this.

    But convincing them of the merits of social media is one thing and then having them follow through is another.

    I’ve seen agents spend money creating websites/blogs, linked to their social networks, and have the ability to really engage their audience but never follow it through. Maybe it’s because there are no immediate results.

    I would really like to hear from any agent who has used social media successfully. I would judge success by how entrenched the agents brand is becoming in their local area thanks to their online presence.

  5. Greg Vincent October 19, 2011 at 10:29 am #

    Peter, in the online space there are a lot of start-ups that are ahead of the curve and as with a lot of industries, in real estate there are a lot of agents who are behind the curve.

    There tends to be 3 groups. The Innovators. The Immitators & The Spectators.

    Trying to bridge the gap between ahead of the curve suppliers and behind the curve customers is a major hurdle in almost every industry nowadays because things are evolving so quickly.

    Providing an online product that is innovative enough for the early adopters and yet efficient enough for the time-poor agents to implement has been and will always be a major hurdle for industry service providers.

    Just like in the music industry there are very few overnight successes in the online world and sometimes you’ve just got to keep playing & trying a few different tunes until you find the one that rockets up the charts.

  6. Andy Del Vecchio October 19, 2011 at 10:29 am #

    maybe my confusion says something anyway…

    that’s it.

  7. Greg Vincent October 19, 2011 at 11:04 am #

    Bill, agents want the Silver Bullet and Social Media is the most powerful platform on the planet, but like with any marketing approach it needs to have a strategy behind it.

    The downside of Social Media is that the wrong strategy can do so much damage to your business and turn people off. Yet the upside is mind-blowing.

    With people now doing so much research online and the fact that Social Media makes it so easy to upload content onto the web, it’s now got to the time where either real estate agents dedicate time to build their own Online Digital Footprint through Social Media and be represented the way they want to be portrayed (as the trusted advisor in their area) OR their customers will do it for them. (typically their unhappy customers)

    People are out there searching the web looking for an agent whom they feel they can trust and Social Media helps to build more trust by providing localised, relevant, engaging content and leads to much faster cut-through via recommendations and endorsements.

    It also helps to make you more visible via the Search Engines and allows you to stay top of mind by sharing updates to your SM network in between newsletters.

    Sorry, lots more that I could go on about but have to rush off.

  8. Robert Simeon October 19, 2011 at 11:13 am #

    I agree it was not the concept rather the agents that let the business model down. The greatest trouble that I see with agents trying to drive their online models is very simple: they fail to take responsibility.

    It is that simple as technology is too smart for their frail minds so they simply don’t care. A phone and an advertisement in the newspaper is all I need – if its not broken no need trying to fix it!

  9. Iolanthe Gabrie Ruby Slipper Consultants October 19, 2011 at 11:38 am #

    Hi Greg,

    Interesting to read this, as I’ve keenly observed the SOBOX introduction. I myself run a business that works in a similar sphere – representing estate agents online. Our approach was quite different to that of SOBOX – more localised and collaborative. We’re still finding out clients are reaping the rewards of having ‘fair dinkum’ social media that really interacts with their community. Of all forms of marketing, social media is a long-term investment that needs to be executed diligently, with care and with a genuine interest in community interaction.

    Ruby Slipper Consultants will continue to help clients in this space!

    Cheers

    Iolanthe Gabrie

  10. Glenn Rogers October 19, 2011 at 11:55 am #

    Agents are too busy trying to list and sell, if you try to get them more deeply involved in the internet they walk away, no time, the larger agents can afford dedicated staff to handle it, but the smaller guys just don’t.

    On that note I find Facebook very useful and Twitter is for twits.

  11. Peter Carabot October 19, 2011 at 12:56 pm #

    The biggest problem with the so called “social media” is the fact that you have to be on it at a) to drive the message and b) to answer your followers and such…. Politicians and big companies have minders that take care of all of that, I doubt that KRudd tweets (sorry about the unintended punt) while he is in cabinet or talking to one of the foreign dignitaries…. Something like sobox would be very very helpful, with one big proviso: it must be price competitive ( against you using your time to do it) and almost fully automated, i.e. I cannot afford to sit at my desk or in the car and every 5 minutes FB or tweet something…………Real Work gets in the way of …….a social experience in the ether!!!!!

  12. Greg Vincent October 19, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    Iolanthe, we are in incredible times right now… Amazing to think that just 7 years ago YouTube, Facebook and Twitter didn’t exist!

    Peter Carabot, it’s a shame you feel that way because even posting on this blog is using Social Media. I find the whole stigma around the use of Social Media amazing because it’s a conversation online and agents are usually very good at having very effective conversations.

    By sharing your knowledge about what’s happening in your area & posting it on the web via a blog site positions you ahead of the majority of the industry and helps people find out more about what you know about what’s going on in Mareeba & the Nth Queensland Tablelands.

    One piece of content can be posted on a blog. It can then be shared out to an email database. The same piece of content can then be shared via Twitter, Facebook, etc Plus it gets indexed by Google which helps to drive organic traffic to your site.

    The old ‘don’t have time for it argument doesn’t really make sense to me any more because there are automation tools that streamline things & the leverage that agents/offices can get from it is enormous. I have some things happening automatically that I have set up once and they just happen automatically & haven’t touched them for over a year. (after 20-30 mins set up)

    Earlier this year I conducted the annual Future of Agents Commission Survey and in that I noticed “Real estate agents are working really long hours, with 14.1% saying that they are working over 60 hours and overall 60.3% (up from 49.8% last year) of those surveyed are spending in excess of 50 average weekly work hours in real estate.”

    Yet, whilst I appreciate agents are working long hours, a lot of agents don’t realise that the internet works for 168 hours a week… it works like a slave.

    If you master the power of the internet it will work for you, but if you don’t it can work against you continuously for that same 168 hours a week that we all have to get things done & make a living.

    btw Glenn, funny you should say that about Twitter. That’s where I started my Social Media. It’s probably the most untapped & misunderstood yet it’s now become one of the most powerful and easiest ways to connect with people online.

  13. John Hellaby October 19, 2011 at 3:49 pm #

    Greg, an interesting read and I couldn’t resist putting my two cents worth in on the forum 🙂

    One of the biggest problems I think is facing online start-ups is an old school business mentality. This encourages a lot of thinking along the lines of “We have a product/service and the profit is in the product/service therefore we must charge a premium for said product/service.”

    They then try to use all manner of marketing to justify their premium price in a market that is in all honesty – cash poor. Since the GFC more and more people are feeling the pinch and the thought of paying for something upfront or as an ongoing subscription/expense is a massive barrier to take up.

    There is a model I’ve been employing over the past 12 months that has been working well – further to that the largest companies on the planet have been using this model to obscene success – Facebook, Google, Youtube.

    The model is called “Freemium” – you offer a cut down version of the product or a limited use version of the product for free and to upgrade to or use premium services a fee must be paid. This lowers the barrier to price or commitment of the user but also engages them in your system. It has a wonderful side effect too – it helps to sort the time wasters from the clients you really want to work with. Because the time wasters just won’t use the service even when they sign on for free.

    At the core of this business model is a unique understanding – that the profit and revenue isn’t actually in your product/service – its in your database. The larger your database is (in online terms) the more revenue you will be able to generate from it. Real Estate Trainers have known this for years and most agents should as well.

    It is incredible how this model works when applied correctly in the online space. Especially where you can create a service based website for very little initial outlay. Thus allowing you to give away your basic service for free and charge for your premium services.

    There are various ways to manipulate the Freemium model to suit your business – For example http://www.checkmyhouseprice.com.au – Agents who sign on are able to subscribe to their suburb for free and the subscription is exclusive so no other agent can sign up for it until it’s released by the original agent. There are no ongoing subscription fees – Agents generate leads through the site via the use of direct marketing material – they can print and deliver it themselves or they can pay us to do it for them and that’s where we turn a profit.

    It takes a little creative thinking to figure out how you can apply the Freemium model to an online venture – but when you do, your numbers explode and you create a database very very quickly. And the bigger the database, the bigger your revenue stream 🙂

    Anyway food for thought 🙂 Love your work Greg, keep up the great blog!

  14. Charlie October 19, 2011 at 6:21 pm #

    I was always ‘interested’ in whether the SOBOX experiment would work; I knew of a few agents that tried it. To me, it sort of felt like it was taking the ‘social’ out of ‘social media’ – not sure how a pre-written blog post (or whatever) could really work in the hyperlocal environment real estate agents find themselves in. I sometimes saw the same post on 2 blogs that were from agencies a few kms apart, and it had nothing to do with the local area. Not saying some degree of outsourcing cannot work in social media, but SOBOX was not it, it would seem. At least not yet.

    The deeper question is can agents do it themselves – do they have time? Yes, they do, it’s a matter of prioritising, and persisting. Working out what works for you, and what feels right, and then doing it consistently. I saw agents in the States that get 50% of their new leads from their social media activities, so it CAN be done.

  15. Simon Baker October 19, 2011 at 9:13 pm #

    Hi all

    I thought I would chip in here with what really happened.

    Firstly Classified Ad Ventures was set up as an incubator for new ideas. SOBOX, property ad guru, property portal watch, list globally, web design, transmit, smart agent sites, and emarketing etc are all business ideas in the incubator.

    As we grow each business we learn and if they don’t progress to plan we kill them. SOBOX is one of those that didn’t progress to plan – so we killed.

    Lesson learned is that dealing with agents is a high cost (both sales and support) business for little return. We would rather chase a low number of high value clients than a high number of low value clients.

    As other businesses grow we focus on where the $ are. For example we have just built and launched http://www.rew.ca in Canada. This was a project in the hundreds of thousands range – far more profitable than SOBOX.

    As for agents and social media – theory and reality seem to be distant cousins!

    Simon Baker

  16. Greg Vincent October 19, 2011 at 9:27 pm #

    Charlie, whilst I agree that the content needs to be more relevant and geo-targeted, I don’t believe that was the issue with SOBOX.

    It’s only now that the market is changing that some agents are starting to lift their head and look for answers, yet many others have had to jump back in, roll up the sleeves and tighten the belts to keep the business going.

    Also, unless the agent is measuring the source of their leads effectively they wouldn’t know if the lead came from their website or the SOBOX part/extension of their site.

    Not sure if they had any strategies in place to help increase followers/fans through the process. At the same time, I must say that PropertyAd Guru was a great site and I shared quite a number of their posts out to my SM network.

    Interesting to see that real estate agent @Sue_Barnes contacted me tonight with a couple of tweets on Twitter and said…

    “Called in to appraise 2day as competition did not stack up on FB! Interesting after seeing interview between @matsteinwede & @GregVincent”

    “@GregVincent tks Greg, client googled a shortlist and I went in unopposed. You are 100% right. Must increase the regularity & content. Tks”

    As I said to Sue, “People don’t have time to interview lots of agents. Interview process is happening via Google.”

    Real Estate is a people business and people use the web…time for agents to connect effectively with people where the people are.

    btw Welcome to the discussion John Hellaby. Just for the record, it’s not my site. I’m priviledged to have been invited to be a B2 Contributor.

  17. PropertyNow Real Estate Portal October 19, 2011 at 9:36 pm #

    Andy Del Vecchio don’t be so hard on yourself . You hit the nail on the head in your first post …and it is that neither you nor I got what sobox is all about….and same for Classified Ad Ventures ( which is continuing )

    I definitely agree with you Andy, that companies need to be crystal clear with their message, of who they are and what they bring to the table.

    Correct too was Glenn Batten, in saying that agents have little time to engage in social media, when their every waking minute is to focus on “list and last”

    In traditional real estate, listings are the only game in town. If you have listings then by default you have sales. Social media in real estate, I would have thought, is more geared to selling than listing and I don’t see that agents will or can ever focus on selling. That may sound strange to hear if you are not an agent because agents sell right? I believe most agents selling skills are used in selling to the vendor and that houses largely sell themselves.

    Every agent knows it’s list and last. But how will social media get an agent listings? I guess if it brings the agency popularity and top of mind awareness then yes it may result in more listings… but it’s a big call.

    The best thing about social media is it’s immediacy and relevency and that’s why the automation of it is counterproductive… as it defeats the purpose and lessens the value of what it brings.

    A way around this would be to use social media but have the public generate it for you so that you don’t have to. An agency would have to give up a degree of control but at least it would work.

    Andrew
    PropertyNow Real Estate Portal

  18. Peter Ricci October 20, 2011 at 12:10 am #

    Simon, thanks for the reply.

    Ahhhhh the “incubator clause” 🙂 I read this a lot these days.

    With many of your offerings real estate agents are asked to invest time and money and going in are they aware that you may kill these at any time?

    From an agents perspective (and this is what this blog is all about) I would always express caution to invest time and money into any company products or services that might be killed at any stage.

  19. Peter Ricci October 20, 2011 at 12:11 am #

    PS; I tried calling you Simon but it seems you old number just goes blank (2007 version) and couldn’t find it anywhere on your websites.

  20. Ryan O'Grady October 20, 2011 at 6:45 am #

    Sobox had happy clients but it failed because of the pricing. They priced themselves out of the market and couldn’t obtain the volume they needed.

    Agents were paying $1,500 for the solution to be set up and then $528 per month for hosting and content management. For most real estate agencies this monthly fee is well beyond their budgets.

  21. Ryan O'Grady October 20, 2011 at 7:03 am #

    Also, clients never owned their solution with Sobox which isn’t good when it’s the hub of your social media interaction.

    Sobox was built using WordPress MU and each site was on a Sobox sub domain eg myblog.sobox.com.au. When they closed down sobox.com.au went off line so the agent no longer had a website and all SEO was lost.

    Sobox kindly provided their clients with a file containing their website content but couldn’t provide clients with the website files. Client’s then had to build their own blogs (or find a company to do this), organize their own domains, website hosting and then import their website content. Although the agents had to start over again, the new structure is a solution which they own, can never be taken away and will continue to grow (as long as they add content).

  22. Andy Del Vecchio October 20, 2011 at 9:46 am #

    Thank You Simon for explaining the Ad ventures!
    and thanks Andrew for making me feel better!! 🙂

  23. Vic October 20, 2011 at 10:54 am #

    Another of Simon’s products that doesn’t seem to be making much headway is http://www.nestoria.com.au The idea was great and I was definitely a supporter, but the cost per property was prohibitive for individual portals in providing the content.
    Latest traffic shows it around 32,000 visitors per month and 400,000 page views. Maybe Simon can make this a free to list and I’m sure that with the Nestoria brand it would fly. Or is this another “incubator” model?

    Maybe Simon could comment.

  24. MAC October 20, 2011 at 1:53 pm #

    Australian pop’n = 23million; Italy = 60million; USA = 380million. If I had the accom and planefares funded by Aus agents that Simon B has I’d be over there too, that’s where the Nestoria’s of the World are working well (well, at least making their owners money). It’s a volume game. e.g. 1% of the Aus market = 2million, 1% of US market = 38million.

  25. Peter Ricci October 20, 2011 at 10:59 pm #

    Mac if I had your accounting skills – I would be a real estate agent too 🙂

  26. Vic October 21, 2011 at 7:53 am #

    MAC, critical mass is good but equally, proportionality must be taken into account. ie the number of players to the population base.

    In those countries you mention there are proportionally more players per population than in Australia. REA at 6/9 million UBs (dependent on whose stats you believe) is the envy of most portals/search engines around the world. A well orchestrated Nestoria, free to list, would definitely fly in this country.

    BTW your maths are exemplary 🙂

  27. MAC October 21, 2011 at 11:33 am #

    Hahahaha That’s what you get for cursory comments on the fly! Hmmm 1% of 23mill = 230,000 and 1% of 380mill = 3,800,000 !!!
    I think you get my point tho’.
    (Thanx for your humour guys 🙂

  28. Charlie October 22, 2011 at 12:54 pm #

    I don’t see social media in real estate as a listing or selling tool; it’s a communication, branding & interaction tool, and in that it does it all, if done well, with a right strategy. Persist (find your voice), listen, learn, and it does work in all respects of business. Does the phone create listings or sales? Not on it’s own no, it depends how it is used. Same for email, paper and a pigeon for that matter (!)

  29. Simon Baker October 25, 2011 at 3:58 am #

    Peter

    Interesting your comment about the incubator clause. If you are starting a new business, by definition it is being incubated.

    We dont have a problem with failure. In fact we embrace it. The more we experiment, the more we try, the better the products and services become.

    SoBox didnt work …but we learned a lot and are applying it to other businesses and other idea.

    ListGlobally is another business in the same category. It worked but not to the expectation i set for the business. So we have transformed it into Transmit – a data feed management business for property portals around the world (with the potential to move into cars and jobs).

    Thus we are an incubator … we embrace new ideas and we embrace failure but more importantly we embrace learning.

    Simon Baker
    Founder
    Classified Ad Ventures (www.classifiedadventures.com)

  30. Simon Baker October 25, 2011 at 4:02 am #

    A comment on Nestoria.

    http://www.nestoria.com.au is a joint venture between Nestoria in the UK and ourselves. We own 30% of the Australian operation and basically manage the Australian customer base.

    The business is going well and profitable.

    Our customer base is not agents but the portals and we have around 10 signed up. They pay on a CPC basis. The model works well as the CPC rate is less than google.

    I hope this clears up any misunderstanding there may be

    Thanks

    Simon Baker

  31. Vic October 25, 2011 at 6:21 am #

    Thanks Simon for the clarification on Nestoria, sorry that my post missed the type of business model it is.
    Hoping you get continued success from Nestoria.
    I like your “incubator” analogy.

  32. Glenn Rogers October 25, 2011 at 6:29 am #

    First time I’ve seen Nestoria, I like it, it’s somehow refreshing to see an interface that just shows the listings without all the distracting and mostly annoying content that usually surrounds them.

    Should have more listings per page though.

  33. Peter Ricci October 25, 2011 at 6:49 am #

    Hi Simon

    Thanks for the reply, my whole point is that when you release projects to people who invest time and money into those, they should know upfront that it is the situation you now describe.

    There is a difference between an incubator (something which is funded normally based on goals and revenue) rather than a small business, which is usually the hard work of a few partners and is usually established as a career objective rather than a revenue goal objective.

    You trying to now draw them as the same is not really correct, we can argue about the difference, but to the consumer (agent) the distinction makes a difference on commitment and this site is all about the agents 🙂

  34. Ed Freyfogle October 26, 2011 at 5:40 am #

    Hi Glenn,

    Ed from Nestoria here. Thanks for the feedback, we agree, we try to keep the interface nice and clean. We focus on one thing only: helping people find the right property quickly and easily.

    Regarding your idea of more listings per page, we hear you. We’ll be rolling out a few experiments in that direction shortly.

    Please keep the feedback coming,
    Ed

  35. Glenn Rogers October 26, 2011 at 7:36 am #

    Hi Ed,

    I’ve long been a believer that simple is best , there has to be as little as possible between the visitor and what they came there for, the easier their experience the more you will see of them.

    I’ve always said the portal should be the invisible conduit between the visitor and what they came to see, it’s not about the web site it’s not about Domain or REA it’s not about Nestoria it’s about delivering propety tp people with nothing in the way if you get my drift, people will respond to that.

    I don’t like flash and anything that might slow a browser down, the new REA fades in and out, for what ? I can guarantee you that the visitor isn’t impressed, guess why , all they go there for is to see property for sale and lease not how clever the coders are.

    The only company that combines both is Apple, clean, clever , just brilliant.

    At some point you’ll have to put ads on I guess……………or do you ?

    If you keep it clean and simple you may be rewarded more than the ads can produce.

    Keep up the good work.

  36. MAC October 26, 2011 at 8:46 am #

    Glenn Rogers:The listings on Nestoria ARE the ads! They get paid per click by the portals.
    This group, apart from the model, has been around for years, is a leader in Europe and Simon B has explained it as well. I don’t think they need yr basic graphics advice. Let’s move on to something that affects agents more directly e.g. Why don’t Australian agencies set-up buyer specialists and vendor/listing specialists within agencies like he US?).

  37. Glenn Rogers October 26, 2011 at 9:01 am #

    Gee thanks Mac for stating the bleeding obvious, I was talking about 3rd party ads, which everyone else would have understood.

    They may not need my graphics opinion but you could do with a lesson in manners.

  38. Vic October 26, 2011 at 11:47 am #

    Glad to see your comments on Nestoria Ed. Just a couple of things that made me comment on the perceived effectiveness of Nestoria.

    Domain and REV appear the only portals to list. Not really a big issue I suppose as between the two they would cover a fair whack of Australian properties for sale.

    According to Google adplanner the site receives 32,000 UVs and 420,000 page views. Not much eh? Do you monitor the leads conversions?

    And I agree with the Glenn R., the site looks and acts great.

  39. Tom October 28, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    If Listglobally has been transformed into another business, Transmit for portals, then why is the Listglobally website still up and charging agents?

  40. Jezza November 7, 2011 at 2:00 am #

    Baker has had a couple of things that haven’t worked since REA but his investment in IPGA has been an absolute winner.

  41. MAC November 7, 2011 at 9:16 pm #

    Jezza, iProperty is a version of Australian real estate portals taken to the more immature markets of Asia. Sure, it still had to be implemented but it’s basically an aggregation of some purchased existing portals overseen by proven management. Good on ’em for seeing they could make serious money by replicating an existing model (but while it keeps ‘im in the money, it certainly still don’t put Mr Baker in the innovation or entrepreneurial class as we have come to know it).

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