Zango CEO Darryn McRae
Zango CEO Darryn McRae. Image supplied.
  • Zango's new CEO Darryn McRae has been in the job just over a week
  • Zango is backed by some of the same people that set up Allhomes in 2007
  • Allhomes dominates the online listings space in Canberra; Zango is now a force

As reported recently, a new real estate listings site in Canberra, established just as the pandemic was hitting last year, turned one year old this month.

Zango was set up by some of the largest real estate agencies in the capital city, together with some prominent local business people. One of those backers, Peter Blackshaw, was also behind the formation  – and later sale – of the now number one Canberran property site, Allhomes.

In an interesting switch of reality – if not, realty – Zango’s backers want to reclaim the property advertising market crown from Allhomes, where real estate ads can be priced at anything from $1500 to $3000 per listing.

Zango charges $299 per sales listing, for the life of the campaign, and $99 for rentals.

New CEO Darryn McRae – himself a long term executive – has been in the job for just over a week, and spoke with The Property Tribune.

“We’re now a viable competitor for the other real estate sites,” he said, “Many of our customers moved their content off Allhomes to Zango. That site has always been the number 1 in Canberra.”

“Our message to agents is that the market is hot, the same people are looking at our site, so why not use Zango?”

“This is the one opportunity real estate agents have to compete against global and national media players.”

Since launching on the 3rd February last year, 13,000 Canberran property owners have chosen to start their marketing campaigns on the new site – some using it exclusively.

Zango is spending time and money in the local community, putting down roots and looking to connect.

“We want to be a good corporate citizen, ” said Mr McRae, “That’s very important to us. Canberra is a real community town. Recently, we were delighted to raise $10,000 in one day for the local organisation Hands across Canberra, which raises money for local charities.”

The ownership of the new site among prominent real estate agents means the industry has a vested interest in making Zango work. All agents advertising on the site can earn points, which can accumulate into benefits.

A quick look around some of the Canberra suburbs saw that Zango was not yet gathering all the property listings content that the other more established sites have, but they are very close in most areas.

“In some areas, we have 100% of the content, in other areas not yet, ” said Mr McRae.

The increased competitive tension will likely play out over the coming months and years, and Zango will provide a case study on whether a new entrant can take on the established media players.

Time will tell as to whether history will repeat itself in Canberra.

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