BETHESDA, MD -- CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSGP) announced today that Jim Black has joined the company as vice president of Electronic Media. Black is the founder and former CEO of Black's Guide, Inc., the nation's largest publisher of office leasing directories.
Black will be responsible for leading and expanding CoStar's electronic media sales force. In addition, he will be involved in developing new products and tools to help building owners, brokers, lenders and other commercial property professionals market their properties and services more efficiently.
"Jim invented the office building directory, and has over 30 years of experience creating successful property marketing products," stated CoStar President and CEO Andrew C. Florance. "We're excited to have him on our team."
"In the early 1980s, brokers relied on printed office directories to keep track of available space," Black commented. "Today CoStar has much more exposure than the office directories, and has become a primary vehicle for marketing buildings and space listings. I'm excited about the opportunities to create new revenue streams for CoStar while helping customers take advantage of the highly targeted marketing channels we can offer."
CoStar has offered dynamic ads within its electronic information products for many years, and is seeing an increase in property-oriented advertising as office vacancy rates climb. "With the national vacancy rate for office space approaching 15%, property owners are in need of efficient, cost-effective solutions to market their buildings," Florance explained. "With thousands of commercial real estate professionals viewing our products every day via the Internet, CoStar products provide a highly efficient marketplace for building owners to advertise their properties to the brokers involved in what we believe to be 60-70% of all leasing transactions."
Black founded Black's Guide in 1976 and expanded its office directory business to 10 markets before being acquired by McGraw-Hill, Inc. in 1988. Black then served as vice president & general manager of Real Estate Information Services at McGraw-Hill until 1990. Since 1990, Black founded and served as president and publisher of a directory publishing company focused on outdoor sports, which was acquired by Ehlert Publishing Co. in December 2002.
CoStar now has deep experience in all aspects of commercial real estate publishing, Florance noted. In addition to Black, CoStar's management team already includes Mark Klionsky, CoStar's senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications, who joined CoStar in May 2000. Klionsky was the long-time publisher of Commercial Property News, the industry's leading trade magazine, and has over 20 years of real estate publishing experience.
About CoStar Group, Inc.
CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSGP) is the leading provider of information services to commercial real estate professionals in the United States and the United Kingdom. CoStar's suite of products offers customers access via the Internet to the most comprehensive database of commercial real estate information on 50 U.S. markets and the United Kingdom. Based in Bethesda, MD, the company has over 800 employees in 34 offices throughout the United States and the United Kingdom, including the largest professional research organization in the industry.