The Real Deal New York

Move Inc. sues ex-president following move to Zillow

Errol Samuelson charged with breach of contract, misappropriation of trade secrets

March 19, 2014 01:57PM

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From left: Move Inc.'s home page, Errol Samuelson and Zillow's web page

From left: Move Inc.’s home page, Errol Samuelson and Zillow’s web page

Move Inc., operator of real estate database Realtor.com, filed suit against ex-president Errol Samuelson, who left the firm for rival Zillow on March 5.

Move joins the National Association of Realtors in the lawsuit, filed Monday in the Superior Court of Washington State, which charges Samuelson with breach of contract, fiduciary duty and misappropriation of trade secrets. Samuelson joined Zillow in the newly-created role of chief industry development officer. At Zillow, he is responsible for building relationships with real estate brokers, franchisors, Multiple Listings Services and real estate trade organizations, in addition to managing the company’s business-to-business products.

“Mr. Samuelson’s former roles at Move gave him access to and knowledge of essentially all of Move’s trade secrets across all of its business lines, whether those secrets dealt with finance, technology, data content, strategy, marketing, or other aspects of the business,” the complaint says. “The secrets known to Mr. Samuelson would inevitably be useful to him and Zillow.”

Zillow also recently snagged another realtor.com executive with the hire of Curt Beardsley, who was promoted to vice president follow Samuelson’s departure. [Real Estate Magazine]Julie Strickland

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