Home Startups Exclusive: Rocket Internet’s Lamudi Africa Found Copying & Pasting it’s Competitors Property...

Exclusive: Rocket Internet’s Lamudi Africa Found Copying & Pasting it’s Competitors Property Listings

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1004742_511613225558574_1629455742_nRocket Internet-backed Lamudi is under fire today, after it was found out copying and pasting it’s competitors property listings in Kenya, just days after the firm was sighted doing the same from another competitor in Nigeria.

This morning content managers of property site BuyRentKenya realized Lamudi’s tricks and thought it was just one property listing copied but a further perusal into the Lamudi site was a shocking trip, they said.

Speaking to TechMoran Jamie Pujara, CEO of BuyRentKenya said, “Rocket Internet’s Lamudi is doing a copy and paste of our properties. Our content managers spend time and money to get the properties on the site, we create relationships with property agents and owners, but Lamudi is simply copying our listings plus even our reference numbers and spelling mistakes.”

Ready with evidence, a property listed on BuyRentKenya here, had been replicated on Lamudi here and while the agent’s website had the same property here, its BuyRentKenya that went to the client and had it on its portal first. Now BuyRentKenya is asking where Lamudi got the property details word for word, even with spelling mistakes and BuyRentKenya’s property reference number BRKSPRENT9 which stand for BuyRentKenya, House for rent. (object ID being BRKSPRENT09- BRK being us, SP –being Stop Properties (the agency), RENT  being the type of property followed by the number.)

And though two wrongs dont make a right, Lamudi further watermarks the images to show some credibility but Jamie knows where they come from.

“The property listings appear first on BuyRentKenya and Lamudi is copying them exactly as they appear on the property portal without consent. This follows its recent acquisition of Konga’s domain names and Lamudi Nigeria stealing property listings from OLX Nigeria, is this move to copy from its main competitors going to last?”
This is not a surprise to him as the news of Rocket Internet officials domain squatting on a Konga’s domains for Kenya, Morocco, Libya and across the continent is still fresh with an impeding court case coming up. OLX Nigeria has also been a victim, though with no public announcements yet, this could ruin the giant’s reputation in Africa, where trust plays a great role in the real estate market.
However,  Aneesa Arshad, CEO Lamudi East Africa denies the allegations saying that many agents asked Lamudi Kenya to upload their listings and she adds that some of the listings come from the agents and other agents refer them to BuyRentKenya where their listings already exist.
“We only use the content created by the agents and none of the content on Lamudi Kenya has been uploaded without the consent of the real estate agents.  It is important for Lamudi to operate in the agents’ and in the customers’ best interest.”
Lamudi went live October last year while BuyRentKenya.com was established in 2012 and boasts of a huge agent database and its over 20,ooo properties brings nearly 100,000 unique visitors monthly to the site. The firm recently joined the Eden Home Network which exposes its properties to millions of users from all over Africa, Europe, Asia, The Americas, Asia, and all the way to the Caribbean. Jamie says his team will keep working on updating listings, local real estate news, market trends, home styling, expert advice and useful guides on buying and selling.
UPDATE: The property agent/owner posted the description below on their site.
5 bed ALL  ENSUITE town  house in  secure  compund  of  only 4. Beautiful fully Fitted  kitchen with attached breakfast area,large living room opening up into garden area, roomy master bedroom with jacuzi and balcony overlooking garden.En suite staff quarters ,generator, mature & functional garden.
Images from BuyRentKenya and Lamudi Kenya

 

BRK1

Lamudi-BRK1

BRK

Lamudi-BRK

 

 

Sam Wakoba reports on technology startups and innovations globally. He is based in Nairobi, Kenya. To have him speak at your event, drop him a mail at sam@techmoran.com. Donate to TechMoran via bitcoins here: 1Q4rZCu7d9SWbSdRLqpvLNFDatT7HWaQtw