Benchmark invests $12.5m in Igglo

Benchmark Europe has confirmed it has invested $12.5m in Finland-based to expand into the UK. The move comes as a number of other ‘aggregator’ search sites for real estate start to ramp-up in the UK, in particular Nestoria, Zoomf, OnOneMap and Extate.

Currently Extate is understood to be in funding negotiations with an unnamed VC. It recently enhanced its service offering hlistings, map integration, Skype calling, price per square footage, standardised address strings and extended coverage. Christmas will see a further revamp of the service according to Douglas de Jager, Founding Director of BytePlay Limited, Extates owners.

In addition, speaking at this week’s Silicon Valley Comes to Oxford event at the Said Business School, Peter Flint, CEO of US-based Trulia, expressed a desire to enter the UK market “at some point”. The move may prove interesting for some of these sites – many of them look quite similar to each other which could lead to legal wrangles over design copyright.

Nestoria is currently working with the volunteer user generated content project Geograph. The initiative is sponsored by the Ordnance Survey – an unusual move for an organisation usually quite protective of its mapping hegemony.