February 2009


I had to break out of my DayQuil blur and write a post about the upcoming Connection 2009 conference, hosted by RMLS.

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Since Portland, OR is the city of bridges RMLS has decided to bridge the gap between banning Vendors from participating in the event and now welcoming Vendors with open arms. RMLS has always been a class act and I was glad to hear they had put a halt to such shenanigans.

I’ve also heard that Beth Murphy will be there! As many of you know she fell very ill and was only recently released from the hospital.

But meanwhile Kurt von Wasmuth has been doing a good job of holding things together at RMLS. I’ve asked him to send me 9 reasons why everyone should attend, here they are:

Nine Reasons to Attend Connection in ‘09
1. Get educated! Hear the latest legal update regarding the VOW/NAR settlement.
2. Go green. Learn more about common green feature fields being incorporated into MLS systems.
3. Save some dough. It costs almost $200 less to register this year versus last! Sign up before March 17 and pay only $145/night in lodging.
4. Keep up with the Jones’s. Check out the progress of your peer MLS!
5. Talk more. Breakout sessions are back by popular demand!
6. Stay current! Hear the latest snapshot of how our industry is handling the economy.
7. Enjoy the scenery. When else will you get to visit the Pacific Northwest this year?
8. Have fun! Plan an extra day to enjoy golf, a tour of wine country or catch a fish on one of our great rivers.
9. Get an edge. Our up-to-the-minute economist will offer the latest and greatest trends for you to share.

$325 is a fantastic deal for this event! Portland is a great town, hopefully I’ll see many of you there and you can join me for some Spanish Coffee (if you don’t know, then don’t ask!)

For full details check out www.connection2009.com

Moving across the country and getting hit by pretty nasty flu bug has me down and out for awhile. Look for some interesting posts starting next week.

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This is a testament to Gregg Larson and his crew for putting on a fantastic event. They have built a great reputation over the years for by building the perfect event cocktail; Great topics, great conversation, great people with a twist of fun!

I made the mistake of waiting (it’s been sold out for a few weeks now) and find myself not being able to join the cool cats in Scottsdale this year.

So I’m putting an alert in my calender this year to register, and register early for next year’s event.

But I will be in Scottsdale a couple days before the event (CMLS has timed their board of directors meeting around the workshop) so if anyone extra conference badge……

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Dave Rifkin

Dave Rifkin

Mike Wurzer doesn’t like standing still. Today Mike and his merry gang at FBS have brought on Dave Rifkin, former eNeighborhoods VP of Agent Services, to head up sales at FBS. Talent is key, so it’s easy to see why Mike has choosen Dave.

What I like about this move is it shows that FBS sees opportunity in this market. Does Wurzer know something the rest of the MLS Vendors don’t know?? Hmmmmmm.

Anyway, back to Dave…

Many of you know Dave, he has been in the industry a long time. Dave started at IRIS, LLC, where he was responsible for managing the west coast MLS Providers and real estate association sales channel for Lightning and Lightning CMA Plus products. IRIS was bought by Homeseekers.com in 2000, he continued there for the next couple years before a brief time at FNIS.

He joined eNeighborhoods in 2004, where he was charged with building an inside sales team. That inside sales team went on to help propel eNeighborhoods to phenomenal growth.

FBS is an employee owned company so you know they give a lot of thought before bringing on a new guy. With the successful launch of their FLEXMLS system at ARMLS, Wurzer knows he’s going to need help to take it to the next level.

That leaves only Andy Woolley as the last senior manager standing at eNeighborhoods since their acquisition by Dominion Enterprises in early 2007. Stu Siegel, Dave Meyer, Dan Woolley and yours truly left in May to 2008. Since then Bryan Ehrenfreund, VP of Operations had also left the company.

Good luck to Dave in his new role as he joins his new family at FBS. The MLS world is watching!

No pressure!!!

UPDATE: Looks like FBS Blog scooped Vendor Alley on this. Check it out!