Redfin buys Walk Score

My friends Matt, Jesse, and Mike just sold Walk Score to Redfin. It’s Redfin’s first-ever acquisition and, in my opinion, it’s a great fit.

Walk Score is a unique beast. The company started with an agenda to profitably promote walkability. Early experiments slowly grew into a trusted service that provided meaningful subjective measurements about places around the world. Realtors discovered that their customers cared deeply about walkability, transit, and other amenities. Walk Score’s unique approach ultimately led them to build perhaps the world’s most useful home and apartment finder.

From my outside perspective, building Walk Score into a profitable, thriving business was an incredible achievement. With such an unusual technology and mission, the road was never clear. Leave it to the Hacker News peanut gallery to get it so wrong:

Man, I need to get in to the real estate/rental site business. Every day another acquisition.

I admit I took the bait; my reply almost wrote itself:

It’s easy. Just start your company in 2007, work yourself to the bone for over half a decade while most of the industry ignores you, build an enduring consumer brand against all odds and expectations, find an engine for profit, build a world-class team, get acquired!

Easy, right?

Congratulations, Matt, Jesse, Mike, and team!