As the real estate industry pivoted in the face of COVID-19, Canadian homebuyers have been more actively turning to online platforms to find their dream homes.
A trailblazer in the online listing space is Toronto-based BuzzBuzzHome, whose mission is to "perfect the online experience for finding, buying and selling new construction homes."
Since launching in 2009, BuzzBuzzHome -- founded by Matthew Slutsky and Cliff Peskin -- has grown to become a leader in the online new home search for consumers and a powerful data-driven marketing tool for developers, brokerages, and marketing agencies across the US and Canada.
Created in late 2018, following the merger of US companies Hanley Wood and Meyers Research, Zonda has become a leading brand in residential construction by providing data-driven housing market solutions to the homebuilding industry. The company also recently acquired Vancouver-based Urban Analytics earlier this month, which expanded Zonda’s data capabilities into the urban and multi-family markets.
Jeff Meyers, CEO of Zonda, said this is a significant milestone for the company and a "very positive way to transform our business going forward," as it will allow the US company to expand into the Canadian market.
“Bringing BuzzBuzzHome under our umbrella uniquely expands our presence in the Canadian market and we are excited about how this collaboration will continue to grow our offerings for our customers and the entire homebuilding industry,” added Meyers.
Zonda says the addition of the BuzzBuzzHome new home listings portal will be complemented by its existing House Plans business that currently taps into approximately two million home shoppers monthly.
BuzzBuzzHome Co-Founder Slutsky said, "with Zonda’s and Urban Analytics’ industry-leading platforms and strong client bases, we will give our existing customer access to resources and a comprehensive solution that they wouldn’t have previously had.”
Slutsky told STOREYS, "this is a very exciting time for the BuzzBuzzHome team."
"Zonda doesn't have a public-facing website when it comes to an online portal, so Cliff and I will be still fully be running BuzzBuzzHome and will oversee Livabl," explained Slutsky.
As for "why now?" Slutsky explained the company was growing to a point where it would receive VC funding.
"When Cliff and I were discussing this we met Jeff and as we built the relationship and through chatting it seemed like there was great synergy," said Slutsky, who said the companies first met back in 2019.
"Zona can bring such a strong value to BuzzBuzzHome, and with its understanding of data and ambitions for growth it seemed like a really strong connection," said Slutsky.
Since launching 12 years ago, BuzzBuzzHome has been a leader for listing new construction homes and through the acquisition, Slutsky says the move will help push the company to be a household name in all of Canada.
"While we have had great successes, no doubt as a small company it's hard to have long-term growth opportunities for employees. Being acquired by a company of this size means there's unlimited growth for our team," Slutsky said.
Slutsky explained that in the face of COVID-19, they learned the team was more productive working remotely than in the office and the acquisition means the company will be able to do even more remote hiring, "which is great," he added.
As for what's to come, Slutsky said the companies have started to work on plans and the next steps, but will "let the dust settle. But starting Monday, we will start to get everything in motion."
Until then, Slutsky says he's ready for a nap.