Zoopla/ Digital Property Group merger is cleared by OFT
PUBLISHED: 15:55 16 April 2012
THE proposed merger of two of the UK’s biggest players in the online property sector has been cleared by the Office of Fair Trading.
Zoopla, which powers the homes24.co.uk property portal run by media group Archant, publisher of the East Anglian Daily Times, and the Digital Property Group, the firm behind Findaproperty.com and Primelocation.com, announced plans to merge last October.
The deal will create new competition for the £1.3billion Rightmove property business by bringing together the second, third and fourth biggest property websites in the UK.
Speaking at the time the merger was announced,
Martin Cunningham, commercial director of homes24.co.uk, said the consolidation of the UK property portal sector to “a definitive two players” would benefit consumers and agents alike.
“A new common platform will make property search less arduous for buyers and renters who will find a significantly enlarged market place within the Zoopla network of properties for sale and to rent available for search,” he added.
Alex Chesterman, founder of Zoopla, added: “The deal will deliver real value for UK estate agents and developers and we will be in a position to provide them with the widest possible exposure and be their most cost-efficient marketing partner.”
Zoopla was founded in 2008, with homes24.co.uk becoming part of its network in January last year. Digital Property Group is owned by the Daily Mail and General Trust.