CoStar Group’s push to become the biggest name in online commercial real estate is about to take another big step forward as the company announced Wednesday evening that it is buying Ten-X Commercial for $190 million in cash.
This will be CoStar’s second big acquisition of 2020.
Earlier this year, CoStar, which already owns Apartments.com, ApartmentFinder.com, ForRent.com, ApartmentHomeLiving.com, Westside Rentals, AFTER55.com, CorporateHousing.com, ForRentUniversity.com and Apartamentos.com, reached a $588 million deal to buy RentPath, which owns Rent.com, ApartmentGuide.com, Rentals.com and Lovely.com.
That deal will leave CoStar in control of nearly all of the top apartment rental sites in the U.S.
But the company isn’t stopping at owning the market for online apartment rentals. CoStar also wants to bring the entire commercial real estate transaction online.
And that’s why it’s buying Ten-X Commercial.
Since its launch in 2009, the Ten-X platform has transacted approximately $7 billion in retail properties, $6 billion in office properties, $4 billion in multifamily properties, $3 billion in hotel properties and billions of other commercial property types.
The company initially focused on distressed properties, as did its sister company Auction.com, but both companies have since shifted to traditional sales as well.
According to information provided by CoStar, Fannie Mae, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Blackstone, Starwood, BlackRock, Capital One, MetLife, LNR, UBS, PNC, and SunTrust have all used the Ten-X Commercial platform to conduct a commercial property transaction.
CoStar, which also operates the “most heavily trafficked online marketplace for commercial properties and land for lease and sale in North America and Europe,” will soon be able integrate Ten-X’s transactional expertise into its websites, including LoopNet.com and CoStar.com.
“Together, Ten-X and CoStar plan to create a new end-to-end commercial real estate platform, combining LoopNet and CoStar’s unmatched online audience of buyers with Ten-X’s clear leadership in online auctions for both performing and distressed assets,” CoStar Group Chief Executive Officer Andrew Florance said.
“Combining our complementary capabilities is expected to create significant benefits for brokers and the institutions they represent by exposing their properties for sale to the biggest pool of potential bidders on the most trusted digital transaction platform and delivering fast and reliable trade execution,” Florance added. “In the aftermath of the economic disruption which is being caused by the global pandemic, we believe that the volume of distressed properties coming to market will surge and that this combined platform will support the market’s recovery.”
It’s important to note that this deal does not include Auction.com.
Back in 2017, private equity firm Thomas H. Lee Partners acquired a majority interest in Ten-X, the parent company of Ten-X Commercial and Auction.com.
According to CoStar, after that deal, Ten-X Commercial was separated from the other Ten-X businesses, including Auction.com. This deal only includes Ten-X Commercial. Thomas H. Lee Partners will retain ownership of Auction.com.
“Today, only 1% of all commercial real estate sales transactions take place online,” Ten-X CEO Steve Jacobs said.
“Just like CoStar Group, we are focused on driving volume and efficiency and have devoted ourselves to addressing the massive, untapped demand for digital commercial real estate solutions,” Jacobs added. “We see significant demand for a one-stop shop platform that provides solutions across the entire transaction continuum and we are delighted to combine our complementary capabilities and strengths with CoStar to meet that demand.”
The companies expect the transaction to close in the third quarter of 2020.