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[UPDATE] RealMassive Hit with Giant Lawsuit over Copyright Violations

06/18/2015

[UPDATE 6/19/15: RealMassive fires back in response to CoStar lawsuit; denies copyright breach]

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Not long ago, the commercial real estate market and world of big data accelerated when RealMassive netted a cool $3 million from RHS Investments in Austin. In 2013, RealMassive launched its web-based open source commercial real estate office listing service and recently reported that coverage will expand across the country.

Founded by Craig Hancock and Joshua McClure, the two believe they are about to secure huge support of national brokerages, surpassing the CoStar Group that has long taken the lead within the commercial real estate market.

As stated by McClure, RealMassive has gained the trust of brokers and asset managers, as well as some tenants and financiers. He added that he and his partner worked hard to build strong professional relationships but now they are going in big.

Since being launched, RealMassive now provides listings in 33 major markets and has grown to a total of 29 employees. McClure stated that the people who work at the company are truly the best, each maintaining a broker’s license.

Another big win for RealMassive was convincing Hank Seale, chairman of RHS Investments and Earnest Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2015 for the central Texas region to chair the company. As stated by McClure, Seale is without question the best kept secret in Austin. In addition to outstanding financial experience, Seale has prior history of building companies form the ground up but also scaling them.

The Rival

The challenge for RealMassive has been the CoStar Group, which for years has provided proprietary leasing data specific to the commercial real estate market. Although this company does exceptional work, some believe the fees are excessive. In comparison, RealMassive offers real estate companies a similar service but for less money.

RealMassive anticipates making money through added services and tools like strategic marketing and activity heat maps that come from the brokerage community. Now, all the founders of RealMassive have to do is convince brokers to turn listings over to them and because the company can leverage real time data, this is a strong possibility.

Questionable Future of RealMassive

For some time, things were looking great for RealMassive but now as reported by CoStar a lawsuit has been filed in federal court seeking millions in damages from real estate listings in Austin. CoStar Realty Information, Inc., the company’s number one rival, filed the suit alleging that RealMassive committed copyright infringement on its intellectual property.

Filed in the United States District Court of Austin, the lawsuit seeks an injunction against RealMassive but also claims that photographs copyrighted by CoStar in posted listings on its site were used. In damages over the use of the images, CoStar is asking for millions of dollars. Although RealMassive was starting to make some serious advances on its rival, being a young company this lawsuit could prove to be a major setback in its success and possible future.

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