zillow trulia $3.5 billion

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Zillow, the fast-growing US online real estate listings service, announced today that it has set in motion the acquisition of Trulia, a rival digital real estate bigwig, for $3.5 billion in stock.

The move comes about one year after Zillow snapped up Street Easy, a competitor that focused specifically on New York City, for $50 million.

The acquisition will create quite the online juggernaut. Zillow reported 83 million unique visitors on mobile and Web in June, while Trulia saw 54 million unique visitors. Despite their similarities, only about half of Trulia’s monthly visitors use Zillow. Two-thirds of Zillow’s visitors don’t use Trulia.

Zillow is known for its agent referral program and media outlets such as Forbes and the Wall Street Journal have suggested that less competition might put the squeeze on realtors and smaller brokers.

Though the companies will share real estate data, both brands will stick as around as separate sites. CEO Pete Flint will remain as CEO of Trulia but report to Zillow CEO, Spencer Rascoff upon the closing of the transaction, which is expected to take place in 2015. Flint will also join the Board of Directors as will a second yet-to-be-determined member of Trulia’s Board of Directors.

Here’s how Twitter reacted to the news:

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