The acquisition of OnTheMarket, a major portal in the U.K., comes as CoStar continues to push further and further into the residential space.

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The so-called portal wars have historically been an American phenomenon, as various sites compete for real estate consumers’ eyeballs. But this week, the conflict moved across the pond after CoStar acquired popular U.K. portal OnTheMarket.

In a statement, CoStar said the acquisition was “approved by over 94 percent in number and over 97 percent in value of OnTheMarket shareholders.” CoStar had previously valued the company at £99 million, or about $126 million. The statement adds that the acquisition “will combine the financial strength, online marketplace experience, and technology of CoStar Group with OnTheMarket’s large network of agents to create a genuine disruptor to the established U.K. market leaders.”

The statement also describes OnTheMarket as “one of the U.K.’s three most visited residential property portals.”

CoStar has long been a behemoth in the commercial real estate space, but over the last several years has been making a major push into the residential sector as well. That push has included the acquisition of Homesnap and, the latter of which has evolved into the firm’s primary consumer-focused portal product.

Along the way, CoStar has also picked fights with Zillow, which is currently the most-visited consumer real estate portal in the U.S. and has made a point of touting major traffic gains. The company has additionally worked to frame as an agent-friendly alternative to Zillow, which is a polarizing force in the industry.

However, the newly completed acquisition of OnTheMarket shows that CoStar’s ambitions lie beyond the U.S. market alone.

In its statement this week, CoStar said it “plans to integrate OnTheMarket into its network of real estate marketplaces and anticipates investing £46.5 million into sales and marketing in the first full year following the commencement of the integration.”

Jason Tebb, CEO of OnTheMarket, also expressed enthusiasm about the deal.

Jason Tebb

“We are very excited to be joining CoStar Group, in a move which will see our business gain the backing of a proven product and technology market leader,” he said in the statement. “We look forward to working together to accelerate our strategy, with the clear goal of becoming the market leader.”

Email Jim Dalrymple II

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