FTC Sues CoStar to Block RentPath Acquisition

The Federal Trade Commission’s lawsuit to block CoStar Group Inc.’s acquisition of competitor RentPath Holdings alleges that the deal will remove opposition.

WASHINGTON – The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is suing to block CoStar Group Inc. from getting its competitor RentPath Holdings. The FTC alleges that the deal will remove opposition in the condominium marketplace. According to the criticism, the acquisition would appreciably boost CoStar’s already-substantial presence in the rental sector, with listing internet sites promoting substantial condominium complexes in forty nine metro locations nationwide.

CoStar operates a community of web sites that includes Apartments.com, ApartmentFinder.com and ForRent.com. RentPath operates equivalent web sites, including Rent.com and ApartmentGuide.com.

“Renters have appear to rely on the ease of on the internet look for internet sites to discover accessible residences that fulfill their demands and spending plan,” claims Daniel Francis, deputy director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition. “CoStar and RentPath operate several of the most well-liked internet sites, and their aggressive, head-to-head opposition has retained promoting charges minimal while supplying consumers a convenient, data-abundant instrument for acquiring an condominium. This acquisition will remove price and high-quality opposition that added benefits both renters and house supervisors.”

Presently, about 70% of U.S. condominium complexes with two hundred or far more units and about fifty% of U.S. condominium buildings with a hundred to 199 units market on net listing services (ILSs) operated by possibly CoStar, RentPath or both. CoStar and RentPath have competed to market ILS promoting to house administration providers to attract potential renters, competing for traffic from potential renters and business from advertisers.

In February, CoStar announced it would obtain RentPath Holdings Inc. in a $587.five million acquisition.

“We take into consideration the FTC is incorrect in its analysis of our transaction and are examining our alternatives,” Matt Blocher, CoStar Group’s vice chairman of selling and communications, told media stores in reaction to the lawsuit.

Source: Federal Trade Commission and “FTC Sues CoStar to Stop RentPath Acquisition,” 580washingtonave.com (Dec. 1, 2020)

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