UPDATED Wednesday, Aug. 23, 3:22 p.m.: In the ongoing battle between real estate data giants CoStar Group and Xceligent, Newmark Knight Frank and CBRE are caught in the crossfire.
The brokerages were served subpoenas related to a back-and-forth copyright feud, documents recorded Wednesday in U.S. District Court show. The court filings do not provide further details.
CoStar first filed suit in December against Xceligent alleging that their researchers routinely stole data and images from CoStar’s Databases.
Xceligent initially filed to dismiss the suit, but followed that up with a 139-page counterclaim in June accusing CoStar of anti-competitive behavior that violates federal anti-trust laws.
Xceligent, based in Missouri, has said it’s committing over $150 million dollars to compete with CoStar in their claim, but stated that “CoStar’s anticompetitive and exclusionary conduct has slowed Xceligent’s growth, raised Xceligent’s costs, and restricted Xceligent’s access to customers.”
The anti-trust accusations against CoStar also mentioned that Xceligent employees have been blocked out of LoopNet, a CoStar subsidiary, when visiting brokerage sites like Colliers, CBRE and Cushman & Wakefield, which are integrated with LoopNet.
Last week, CoStar filed to dismiss Xceligent’s counterclaim, calling it baseless and reiterating its stance that proprietary data was stolen.
In an earnings call in May, CoStar executives told investors they could spend up to $20 million on the case in 2017. “We believe it is a vital and prudent investment,” CoStar CEO Andrew Florance said, and claimed to have more than 100 terabytes of evidence in connection with the case.
In a statement to The Real Deal, a spokesperson for Xceligent said, “This is an ordinary part of the litigation process. Xceligent’s goal is to gather all of the information necessary to protect the industry’s right to share data.”
A CoStar representative said in a statement that there was no reason to involve clients like CBRE and Newmark. “The suit is about Xceligent’s industrial-scale theft of CoStar’s content. Regrettably, Xceligent is dragging our customers into the fray by forcing them to produce records from their files.”