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Zillow Is Said to Hire Citigroup to Manage Initial Share Sale

The homepage of Zillow.com is displayed on a computer monitor in Washington, D.C. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
The homepage of Zillow.com is displayed on a computer monitor in Washington, D.C. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Zillow Inc., an online real-estate information service, has hired Citigroup Inc. to manage its initial public offering, three people with knowledge of the company’s plans said.

The exact timing of an IPO filing from the Seattle-based company wasn’t provided by the people, who declined to be identified because the plans are private. Companies planning to sell shares to the public hire banks before filing a prospectus with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Zillow.com lets home buyers, sellers, renters and managers list and search for properties and related information. The company also runs a mortgage marketplace. Investors include Legg Mason Capital Management, Benchmark Capital, Technology Crossover Ventures and PAR Capital Management Inc. A financing round of $30 million in 2007 valued Zillow at $400 million.

The company gets its revenue from selling advertising space on its website and through mobile-phone applications, Chief Executive Officer Spencer Rascoff said in September. Zillow struck an agreement with Yahoo! Inc. last year to add its home listings to Yahoo’s real-estate pages.

Katie Curnutte, a spokeswoman for Zillow, declined to comment, as did Mark Costiglio, a spokesman at New York-based Citigroup.

An IPO filing would add Zillow to the growing list of U.S. Internet companies that intend to go public, including online-radio provider Pandora Media Inc. and social-networking site LinkedIn Corp. On March 11, HomeAway Inc., a vacation-rental website, filed to sell as much as $230 million worth of shares in an IPO.

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