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REA: News Ltd to acquire 44.2% stake in realestate.com.au

Document date:  Thu 30 Nov 2000
Published:  Thu 30 Nov 2000 09:34:23
Document No:  224213
Document part:  A
Market Flag:  Y
Classification:  Issued Capital - Other , Asset Disposal

REALESTATE.COM.AU LIMITED                     2000-11-30  ASX-SIGNAL-G

HOMEX - Sydney                                                        

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News Limited have entered into an agreement with realestate.com.au to
invest $10.75 million in cash and kind in return for a 44.2 per cent
stake in the company.

Under the terms of the agreement News would acquire 40 million shares
with an option to acquire an additional 10 million shares over the
next five years. In return News Limited will contribute:

* $2.25 million in cash;

* a range of advertising and marketing services;

* the co-branding of 94 suburban newspapers' real estate sections
Australia-wide;

* its suburban newspapers' sales force to sell realestate.com.au
services;

* the transfer of 'Homes Online' to realestate.com.au; and

* a range of sophisticated technology services.

While News Limited would acquire the outstanding amount of Macquarie
Bank's loan facility, extended to realestate.com.au on 29 August of
this year, Macquarie will continue to retain a significant interest
in the company.

"This is a landmark deal for the Australian real estate industry. The
most widely read newspapers are joining forces with the most visited
online real estate service. Property hunters will now be able to read
about a property on the way to work then go on a virtual tour of the
property as soon as they are in front of a computer,"
realestate.com.au Chairman Professor John Niland said.

"This is a great partnership. It enables us to leverage our
technology in new markets and across News Limited's customer base.

"The first port of call for most people buying or selling real estate
is the newspaper. Only now, the newspaper will tell you how to get on
to the net to take a virtual tour of those properties you are
interested in. Anybody serious about buying or selling a property
will want to do it this way.

"realestate.com.au is the most convenient and complete way to
research potential properties. The technology means that no matter
where you are, you can access properties Australia wide, from the
convenience of an internet connection," Professor Niland said.


For further information please contact Vivienne Hardy at Intersection
Services Marketing on (02) 9247 3782.