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Homebuying Startup Knock Scraps Plans to Go Public, Lays Off Half Its Staff

  • Housing-tech firm instead raises $70 million in private round
  • CEO says collapse of Zillow iBuying business spooked investors
Sean Black
Sean BlackPhotographer: Vaughn Ridley/Sportsfile/Getty Images
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Homebuying startup Knock is scrapping plans to go public and laying off nearly half its staff after a tumultuous year for property technology companies. 

Knock, which pioneered a type of financing that gives homebuyers a leg-up in competitive markets, was on the verge of going public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company last year, Chief Executive Officer Sean Black said in an interview Tuesday.