Screenshot of Redfin map browser
Russell 2000 Component
Seattle, Washington, U.S.
|Headquarters||Seattle, Washington, U.S.|
|Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orange County, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco Bay, Seattle, St. Louis, Richmond, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Cleveland and New Jersey|
Glenn Kelman (CEO) |
Bridget Frey (CTO)
Chris Nielsen (CFO)
Scott Nagel (PREO)
Number of employees
|2,193 as of June 2017|
Redfin is a full-service real estate brokerage that uses modern technology to help people buy and sell homes. The Seattle-based company was founded in 2004, and went public in Aug. 2017. Glenn Kelman is the CEO. Redfin's business model is based on sellers paying Redfin a small fee, in the 1% to 2% range, compared with the 2% to 3% fees charged by real estate agents. Buyers are given a small portion of this fee by Redfin.
Redfin was founded in 2004 by David Eraker, Michael Dougherty, and David Selinger. David Eraker, who had dropped out of the University of Washington's medical school for a career in software design, was inspired by his own real estate misadventures and founded Redfin with hopes of upending the traditional brokerage model. Unlike the other major real estate web portals (Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com), which get the majority of their earnings from advertising and lead generation, Redfin operates as a brokerage and makes money when users buy or sell homes with its real estate agents.
Redfin began offering online, map-based real estate search when David Eraker, who was working out of his apartment in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood, and his partner, Michael Dougherty, an electrical engineer with a degree from Yale, struck upon the idea of displaying homes for sale on an online map. This was before the introduction of Google Maps or Microsoft's Bing Maps. Redfin combined satellite maps with real estate information, and helped overcome the limitations of online real estate search systems at the time. David Selinger, who had previously led the research and development arm of Amazon's Data Mining and Personalization team, joined Redfin as the third founder and the CTO. Selinger helped build Redfin's mapping and real estate data analytics engine.
After receiving $1 million in initial financing from Madrona Venture Group, Redfin raised $8 million in Series B funding from Vulcan Inc., the investment arm of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen in May 2006. In April 2006, CNN reported that Redfin had received threats from competitors seeking to "break their kneecaps." In July 2006, Redfin was the recipient of the Innovator of the Year award by Inman News, a leading online news source for the real estate industry.
Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman accepted a third round of funding for $12 million from Greylock and Draper Fisher Jurvetson in July 2007. In May 2007, just a few days after appearing on 60 Minutes, Redfin was fined $50,000 by The Northwest Multiple Listing Service and was forced to shut down its "Sweet Digs" blog, which used to contain reviews of the homes on the market. Northwest MLS said that such reviews are not allowed under Multiple Listing Service (MLS) rules. Sweet Digs was relaunched in June 2007 with an analytical format, and covered all the markets Redfin served. Redfin stopped publishing Sweet Digs in 2008.
In May 2010, Redfin won the Seattle 2.0 award for "Best Startup".
Redfin began an automatic agent rating system in 2012, which drew criticism for using inaccurate data, and pulled its tool from the market.
In October 2012, Redfin was named one of The DIGITAL 100: World's Most Valuable Private Tech Companies by Business Insider.
In July 2013, Inman News again named Redfin as the recipient of the Innovator of the Year award. In June 2014, Seattle Business Magazine recognized Redfin as the best company to work for in 2014 in the Large Companies category and Redfin was placed number 1 out of 21 large Seattle-based companies. In 2017, Redfin was named the number 1 tech company to work for in Seattle by Hired.com and the #9 best company to work for in Seattle by USA Today.
The firm has participated in several subsequent funding rounds, raising $50 million in a mezzanine round led by T. Rowe Price and Tiger Global, bringing its total venture funding to slightly over $96 million. In December 2014, Redfin raised another $70.9 million to help expand its software-powered real-estate business across the U.S. The round was led by Wellington Management Co. and Glynn Capital Management, among others, and includes Brothers Brook, Annox Capital Management and previous investors Tiger Global Management and T. Rowe Price.
Redfin went public on July 28, 2017. The IPO raised $138 million. The offering priced at $15 a share, above the expected price range of $12 to $14. Redfin's stock closed at $21.72 on the first day of trading, giving the company a market capitalization of $1.73 billion.
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