Homestore, Inc. to Change Name to Move, Inc.
February 23, 2006
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.-- Homestore, Inc. (NASDAQ:HOMS) announced its intention to change the Company's name to Move, Inc. to coincide with an expanded commitment to offering consumers comprehensive real estate listings, decision support tools, and access to qualified move-related service providers. This enhanced consumer focus will enable Move to create even more effective advertising venues for a broader range of advertisers.
Move, Inc. will have three compelling consumer offerings: Realtor.com, Move and Welcome Wagon. The new name unifies the Company's strategy of providing a platform for connecting consumers with Realtors, home builders, rental property owners and other move-related advertisers before, during and after a move.
"We are excited to introduce a new brand--Move(TM)--that perfectly complements our ongoing goal of serving as an essential resource for both consumers and advertisers in and around a move," said Mike Long, Homestore's chief executive officer. "This focus on consumer needs is the next step in our evolution; from providing software and technology to the early adopters within the online real estate category, to becoming the real estate industry's trusted partner for efficiently reaching consumers. These changes will also enable us to extend Realtor.com's position as the most visited real estate site on the Internet."
NEW PRODUCT OFFERINGS
Along with the new brand, in the second quarter, the Company will launch an all new real estate search engine site, Move.com, as well as additional products and features designed to provide the best consumer content experience available. Consistent with that goal, Homestore has acquired Moving.com, a best-in-class online provider of consumer moving tools and access to qualified moving services.
The Company's new offerings include:
- www.move.com - The new Move.com Web site will replace Homestore.com, HomeBuilder.com and RENTNET in the second quarter, and will serve as a comprehensive move and real estate listing search engine. The site will give consumers the most extensive selection of real estate listings available by providing access to Realtor.com listings, along with new home and rental listings from all over the Web.
- New Homes and Rentals Business Model Changes - With the launch of Move.com, the Company will be adopting many elements of the highly successful Realtor.com business model for the Company's new home and apartment industry customers. This will include free basic property listings and a Showcase Listing product for customers who want to enhance their properties. In addition, home builders and rental owners will have the opportunity to purchase prioritized Featured Listings as well as traditional text advertisements on a cost-per-click basis.
- New Realtor.com Products - Realtor.com will add a community component to its site designed to enable customers to promote their local communities and to interact with consumers online. Together with Realtor.com's leading position in audience size and listings content breadth, this new user-generated content will allow the Company to create the best online consumer real estate experience available. Realtor.com will also be adding Featured Listings to its search results, available on a cost-per-click basis, free virtual tour distribution for Showcase(TM) customers, new mapping technologies, and a Featured Comparative Market Analysis product to generate CMA leads.
The Company expects to launch Move and other new product offerings during the second quarter of 2006. Upon full launch of the new Move.com Web site, the Company's NASDAQ stock symbol will change from "HOMS" to "MOVE." The Company will solicit shareholder approval of the new Move, Inc. name at its annual meeting in June 2006.