Q & A with CoStar CEO Andrew Florance

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How does real estate analytics firm the CoStar Group mine data on its 1.4 million property listings? According to founder and CEO Andrew Florance, the company employs roughly 800 researchers who interview real estate power players and read S.E.C. filings and has “a fleet of Priuses that visit literally millions of properties.” While some CoStar customers dropped the service during the downturn, the company has seen its customer base increase in the last few quarters, Florance said. “When the market was going up, nobody had to analyze anything — you just buy something, sell it later and make money,” he explained. “Now all of a sudden people are like, ‘Oh my gosh, we just lost our shirt!’ They are buying data they should have bought before.” CoStar is relocating its New York office, Florance revealed, noting that in the eight-month span between his two office-hunting trips, the same spaces were on the market. [NYT]

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