CFO of Zillow Group Kathleen Philips joins Ben and David to cover the show’s first true “merger” versus “acquisition" (only took 22 episodes!), Zillow’s 2015 combination with Trulia to form Zillow Group.
Note: our audio glitches unfortunately continued on this episode,and quality is rough. We recommend listening on speakers vs headphones if you’re able. We apologize and will be back to normal quality next time!
Topics covered include:
Zillow and Trulia’s beginnings during the “Web 2.0” era in the mid-2000’s
Zillow, Trulia and other online players’ place within the massive US real estate market
The lengthy “dance" between Zillow and Trulia and earlier aborted merger talks between the two
The difficulty of "true mergers” among private companies and why the path is easier for public companies
Public company shareholders’ influence and role in M&A transactions
Details of the blazingly fast negotiations (27 days start to finish!) per disclosures in the SEC filings (scroll down to "Background of the Mergers”)
Structuring the deal and incentivizing Trulia and Zillow mangers to stay and continue growing as separate brands
Trulia cofounder Sami Inkinen’s whereabouts during the merger negotiations
The experience going through a lengthy FTC review of the merger, and defining what the relevant “market” is the FTC should be considering
Introducing our new acquisition category: a “timeline acquisition” ;) (h/t Kathleen)
Zillow Group’s overall approach to acquisitions, folding into its broader HR strategy