RICHMOND, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CoStar Group (NASDAQ: CSGP), a leading provider of online real estate marketplaces, information and analytics in the commercial and residential property markets, today announced a historic partnership with Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) to support the development of its planned Arts and Innovation Academic Building through an $18 million commitment. The project, tentatively to be named the CoStar Center for Arts and Innovation, subject to legal requirements and any necessary approval by the VCU Board of Visitors, the Commonwealth’s Department of General Services, or other state agencies, will consolidate VCU’s nationally recognized School of the Arts, ranked fourth in the country, and innovation programs under one roof for the first time. CoStar Group’s investment adds to the Company’s long-standing history of investment in educational opportunities in the city of Richmond and the Commonwealth of Virginia.
“VCU has proven to be a constant source of innovation and energy and CoStar Group has drawn heavily from its graduates and creative talent in recent years. As we continue to expand our business, our interests align seamlessly with VCU’s commitment to educational excellence,” said Andy Florance, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of CoStar Group and a member of the VCU Board of Visitors since 2021. “I am confident that Dr. Rao’s leadership will continue to make a positive lasting impact and that he will be a thoughtful steward of the Center’s resources. This partnership will support VCU's world-class educational programs as well as contribute culturally to the city of Richmond and the Commonwealth of Virginia, which CoStar Group calls home.”
“CoStar Group’s strategic partnership - the second-largest corporate commitment in VCU history - will provide a launch pad for generations of VCU innovators, artists, makers and performers,” said Michael Rao, Ph.D., President of Virginia Commonwealth University and VCU Health. “We’re excited about our plan to name the CoStar Center for Arts and Innovation, which will recognize the tremendous alliance that has grown between VCU and CoStar Group. This collaboration will enrich our students, CoStar Group’s workforce, and the city of Richmond alike.”
The planned CoStar Center for Arts and Innovation is expected to be a 213,000-square-foot multidisciplinary complex on a one-acre site at the prominent intersection of Richmond’s Broad and Belvidere streets. Designed to be a resource not only for VCU but for the wider Richmond community, the planned design features flexible classroom spaces, interdisciplinary performance venues and makerspaces for rapidly growing partnerships across arts, business, humanities and sciences, medicine and engineering. Activities in the building are expected to range from opera to quantum computing, integrating the disciplines of engineering, cinema, theater, immersive media technology, gaming and the creation of new knowledge. Groundbreaking for the project is planned for the fall of 2023. The center is expected to open to the public in early 2027.
Institutionally, CoStar Group has long advocated for educational investments as a pathway to success for young people, a belief mirrored by the personal philanthropic efforts of Florance. CoStar Group has been an active participant in programs that provide needed supplies to Richmond’s public schools and is a key supporter of Management Leaders for Tomorrow (MLT), which aims to train the next generation of diverse leaders in business. Florance, who was named to the VCU Board of Visitors in 2021, received an honorary doctorate from the school in 2019. VCU is widely recognized for its academic excellence; its School of the Arts is nationally ranked fourth amongst public and private schools across the country and its Brandcenter is nationally ranked as the number one graduate advertising program in the U.S and a top five digital media and marketing school.
VCU plays a major role in the cultural and economic life of Richmond, encouraging its students to be active stewards of the city they call home. In turn, CoStar Group has adopted and continually expanded its presence in Richmond for its diverse amenities, artistic and economic vitality, and multi-talented workforce- one trained in large part by VCU, which moves beyond classroom instruction to prepare its students to tackle real-world challenges at major corporations like CoStar Group.
CoStar Group first established its global operations headquarters in Richmond in 2016, and now employs more than 1,500 residents. The company recently broke ground on a new Richmond campus which is expected to more than double the company’s workforce in the city, with new jobs spanning research, technology, operations, software development, and sales. Once the expansion is complete, CoStar Group is poised to become the largest technology company and one of the largest private employers in Richmond.
About CoStar Group, Inc.
CoStar Group (NASDAQ: CSGP), is a leading provider of online real estate marketplaces, information, and analytics in the property markets. Founded in 1987, CoStar conducts expansive, ongoing research to produce and maintain the largest and most comprehensive database of commercial real estate information. Our suite of online services enables clients to analyze, interpret and gain unmatched insight on commercial property values, market conditions and current availabilities. STR provides premium data benchmarking, analytics, and marketplace insights for the global hospitality industry. Ten-X provides a leading platform for conducting commercial real estate online auctions and negotiated bids. LoopNet is the most heavily trafficked commercial real estate marketplace online. Apartments.com, ApartmentFinder.com, ForRent.com, ApartmentHomeLiving.com, Westside Rentals, AFTER55.com, CorporateHousing.com, ForRentUniversity.com and Apartamentos.com form the premier online apartment resource for renters seeking great apartment homes and provide property managers and owners a proven platform for marketing their properties. Homesnap is an industry-leading online and mobile software platform that provides user-friendly applications to optimize residential real estate agent workflow and reinforce the agent-client relationship. Homes.com is the fastest growing online residential marketplace. BureauxLocaux is one of the largest specialized property portals for buying and leasing commercial real estate in France. Business Immo is France’s leading commercial real estate news service. CoStar Group’s websites attract tens of millions of unique monthly visitors. Headquartered in Washington, DC, CoStar Group maintains offices throughout the U.S., Europe, Canada, and Asia. From time to time, we plan to utilize our corporate website, CoStarGroup.com, as a channel of distribution for material company information.
About VCU and VCU Health
Virginia Commonwealth University is a major, urban public research university with national and international rankings in sponsored research. Located in downtown Richmond, VCU enrolls more than 28,000 students in 244 degree and certificate programs in the arts, sciences and humanities. Forty-one of the programs are unique in Virginia, many of them crossing the disciplines of VCU’s 12 schools and three colleges. The VCU Health brand represents the VCU health sciences academic programs, the VCU Massey Cancer Center and the VCU Health System, which comprises VCU Medical Center (the only academic medical center in the region), Community Memorial Hospital, Tappahannock Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, and MCV Physicians. The clinical enterprise includes a collaboration with Sheltering Arms Institute for physical rehabilitation services. For more, please visit vcu.edu and vcuhealth.org.
This news release includes "forward-looking statements" including, without limitation, statements regarding CoStar Group's expectations, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future. These statements are based upon current beliefs and are subject to many risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from these statements, including the risk that CoStar Group’s business, expansion, construction and growth plans and needs change; the risk that the expansion plans do not create or result in the expected benefits or result in CoStar Group becoming the largest technology company and largest private employer in Richmond; the possibility that the Company is unable to or does not create the number of jobs expected; the risk that the Company is unable to hire or retain the number of employees currently expected or to fill the number of jobs created; and the risk that VCU is unable to complete construction on the proposed multidisciplinary complex in the manner proposed, within the proposed budget or timeline, or at all. More information about potential factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, those stated in CoStar Group's filings from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in CoStar's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022 and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2023, each of which is filed with the SEC, including in the "Risk Factors" section of those filings, as well as CoStar's other filings with the SEC available at the SEC's website (www.sec.gov). All forward-looking statements are based on information available to CoStar and VCU on the date hereof, and neither CoStar nor VCU assumes any obligation to update such statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.