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Online real estate company on Oct. 27 said it agreed to buy Cendant Corp.'s Internet real-estate portal in a stock deal valued at $761 million, creating the nation's largest Web-based real estate service. Under the terms of the deal, Thousand Oaks, Calif.-based said it will acquire and some of Cendant's related assets in exchange for 26.3 million common shares. The two companies plan to merge several of Cendant's online real-estate assets including, its Rent Net apartment locator service, its Welcome Wagon direct-marketing company and other Web sites, all of which will be integrated into Homestore's Web network. The deal gives's Web site exclusive 40-year access to listings from Cendant's Century 21, Coldwell Banker and ERA U.S. real estate franchises and also opens the door for Cendant to use's technology and Web-based marketing products and applications. The companies hope federal regulators will approve the deal in the first quarter of 2001.

Copyright October 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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