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HolidayBuyer's Guide
Tech Industry

AllApartments.com changes name

The site for apartment hunters has expanded and renamed itself SpringStreet.

AllApartments.com has renamed itself and has launched a new marketing campaign aimed at recasting the rental-listings service as a comprehensive source of help and information for apartment-hunters.

The redesigned site is called SpringStreet. The privately held company, founded in January 1997, is backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a high-tech investment firm that has acquired a kingmaker reputation in Silicon Valley.

In its reincarnation, Spring Street will broaden its business beyond apartment rentals--to vacation rentals, for example. An advertising campaign is planned along with the relaunch, through a new ad agency.

The reborn enterprise will add content related to real estate from newspapers such as the Chicago Sun Times to expand its Web site. The goal is to provide a one-stop housing shop, including comprehensive rental listings and details about a particular neighborhood such as restaurants and shopping availability.

SpringStreet is addressing two tight rental markets by hooking up with fee-based services. The firm will share listings and marketing with the New York Apartment Source and San Francisco's Roommate and Apartment Network.

The new name "is evocative, like Amazon and Yahoo," said Andy Jolls, director of consumer marketing. "Like those companies, it will allow us to do just about anything under that brand."

On the distribution side, the company has struck deals with Excite, America Online, and the Microsoft Network, among others. The company hopes that these moves, expected to be announced this week, will help it stand out from competitors in a cutthroat market.

Sources also said the company is negotiating another round of financing, and one possible investor is luxury goods producer LVMH of France. Besides Kleiner Perkins, investors in AllApartments.com have included Rosewood Capital, Technology Crossover Ventures, and Marcus & Millichap real estate.