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Owner of Rugby.com Emerges from Scrum $350,000 Richer! 

by Ron Jackson  

We've only seen a couple of brief lulls in the bull market that domains are enjoying this year. One was last week when overall sales were solid but there were no high flyers. The previous time that happened the following week was a monster and it just happened again. Rugby.com led the rebound with a whopping $350,000 price tag, placing it among the top 5 sales this year. 


North Carolina's Peninsula Investments bought the domain from Canada's Communicate.com according to the sale announcement released by Business Wire Nov. 5th. A few weeks ago Communicate.com announced they had sold Automobile.com, Exercise.com, Call.com and MakeUp.com for a total of $1 million dollars, however according to the public WhoIs record, none of those domains has yet been transferred to the buyer. In contrast, Rugby.com has been moved to the new owner.

Rugby.com played in its own league this week, but the supporting cast also flexed a lot of muscle. Seven 5-figure deals were announced along with the highest .biz sale reported to date. That was Gay.biz which went for $9,500 at Sedo.com to break into the mainstream Top Ten at #9. That domain also easily tops our New TLD chart (one of six 4-figure deals on that list this week). 

SnapNames.com delivered another powerhouse performance claiming 4 of the 10 slots on the Big Board. A sweet 3-letter combination, VOC.com, led the way for them, finishing second to Rugby.com after going for $20,001. The other leaders at SnapNames all hit five figures as well, including 4th-ranked Boomers.com at $19,900. That high traffic domain scores 1,300 in Overture with the extension. SnapNames also took #6 with ProMed.com at $17,100 and #8 with Salle.com at $10,299.

GreatDomains and Sedo.com took two slots each and Afternic.com accounted for the week's other big winner. GreatDomains scored an impressive daily double by landing two entries in the top 5; Hebrew.com at $20,000 and H3.com at $18,000. Sedo's top sale was VacationHomeRentals.com at $15,000. Let's take a look at the complete Top Ten then we'll continue with a long list of additional sales that made it another delightful week in Domainland:

Domain Name Journal's Top Ten 
Reported Domain Sales - Mon. Nov. 1, 2004 - Sun. Nov. 7, 2004
Euro to Dollar Conversion (€ to $) is Based on Rates in Effect Tue. Nov. 9

  Domain

Sold For

Where Sold
1. Rugby.com  $350,000 Pvt Sale
2. VOC.com $20,001 SnapNames
3.  Hebrew.com $20,000 GreatDomains
4.  Boomers.com  $19,900 SnapNames
5. H3.com  $18,000 GreatDomains
6. ProMed.com  $17,100 SnapNames
7. VacationHomeRentals.com  $15,000 Sedo
8. Salle.com   $10,299 SnapNames
9. Gay.biz  $9,500 Sedo
10. Fenchurch.com  $8,650 Afternic

Keep in mind that these are the highest value sales that have been reported to us in the past week. This column is meant to be an educational tool, not a complete list documenting ALL high value domain sales. Such a list is impossible to produce because many sales are kept private at the insistence of buyers, sellers or both.

As you can see Afternic.com anchored the chart with Fenchurch.com #10 at $8,650. That domain might puzzle a lot of Americans since it shows 0 with the extension in Overture and only 99 without. However it is a fairly common surname in the UK and is a popular street in London. Many UK businesses operate under the Fenchurch name including a major clothing company. Afternic's other sales this week included XEP.com at $4,900 and 2Linux.com at $3,500. They reported a total of 52 sales with a large block of .us domains in that group (one of which ranks 2nd on our New TLD list that we will get to a bit later).

The banner week at SnapNames included a lot of gems from the diamond mine below the Top Ten. One of those was FreeGovernmentMoney.com at $7,400. They even scored with .org, sending Toledo.org to a new home at $4,621. Other notable Snap shots included Espe.com ($3,151), Phun.com ($2,990), Paintings.net ($2,667) and FindApartment.com ($2,550). Nissan350z.com sped off with another $2,222 while FindHere.com uncovered $2,050. Also of interest were Correctional.com at $1,798 and Enchere.com (the French word for "bid") at $1,723.

Sedo's sales list was just as impressive. They continue to knock people out with a one-two punch of sales quantity and extension diversity. They reported 4-figure sales in five different country codes as well as the usual standbys, .com and .net. Their global charge was led by Algebra.ch (Swiss country code) at €6,000 ($7,740). InsideTrack.co.uk was close behind at £3,500 ($6,493). They also had Klifo.de (German country code) at €3,000 ($3,820), but the real stunner was the highest .ws sale we have ever seen, WhoIs.ws at £2,610 ($4,848)! .Ws is the Samoan country code that a private American company has been marketing for several years as meaning "web site". Domain pros have long looked down their noses at that kind of "rebranding" of country code extensions but a few more sales like this could result in an attitude adjustment. WhoIs.ws is a special case though. It scores 0 with the extension in Overture but has existing traffic from more than 700 inbound links.

Sedo managed to do it with another team from the same minor league this week, collecting €950 ($1,225) for Space.cc. That's the Cocos (Keeling) Islands country code that Verisign has been marketing as an alternative to .com (without trying to assign a different meaning to the letters). Oh yes, before we forget, Sedo does just fine with the familiar TLD's too! E-Sport.com brought them  €4,000 ($5,160) and 33.net threw another $4,000 log on the fire. They also got €2,944 ($3,798) for Sprachreisen.com ("language-learning holiday" in German) and $3,000 for NYCom.com. The latter one looks a little redundant to me but for 3K I'll start stuttering too!

GreatDomains supplemented their two Top Ten entries with 6pm.com at $7,000 and Mayan.com at $6,000. Meanwhile Pool.com made a splash with Corinthians.com tithing $5,500 and iFrends.com (a misspelling of IFriends that generates respectable traffic) contributing $3,199. They also found a $2,501 cure for HerpesOutbreak.com and plugged PowerConnection.com in for another $2,250. AtlantaBooty.com shook that thang for $2,050 while Pool's top .net was DiscountAirline.net at $1,300.

At Enom's Club Drop, BabyBlanket.com provided a cuddly $4,909. ElectronicPayment.com rang up $3,609 and MagicShows.com pulled a $2,709 rabbit out of the hat. DotcomAgency.com also delivered the goods with ChromePaint.com spiffing up the bottom line to the tune of $3,366. PokerSet.com anted up with another $2,800 and GrainDryer.com kept the heat on at $2,210.

In the Pipeline: Don't look now, but SnapNames may be headed for another dominating performance next week. As we were going to press (Tue. Nov. 9), an auction for Infection.com had just ended at $29,600 and one for Lucid.com finished at $18,201. Those will fall in next week's reporting period. SnapNames has a very good record of collecting on winning bids so we expect to see those two in the spotlight next Tuesday night.

*****

As we noted earlier, our Year to Date chart gets a new member this week. Rugby.com moved right into the front row after that big $350,000 deal, the 4th largest of 2004. Here is the complete rundown of big winners as we near the end of a truly memorable year:

Domain Name Journal's Year-To-Date Top Sales
Highest Reported 2004 Domain Sales through Sun. Nov. 7, 2004  
Euro to Dollar Conversion (€ to $) 
Based on Rates in Effect When Sales Were Originally Reported by DNJ

 - Domains entering the chart this week are highlighted in green -

  Domain

Sold For

Where Sold
1. CreditCards.com $2.75 Million Private Sale
2. Mercury.com $700,000
(700K cash + $400,000 in goods & services)
Private Sale
3. ME.com $460,000 Moniker / DomainSystems
4. Rugby.com  $350,000 Pvt Sale
5. Smoking.com $325,000 GreatDomains
6. Viajes.com
("travel" in Spanish)
 $300,000 Sedo
7. Arab.com $225,000 Pvt Sale
8.  VisitFlorida.com $186,000 Pvt Sale
9.  Commerce.com $180,000 Sedo
10.
(tie)
Animation.com  $150,000 Pvt Sale
10.
(tie)
Beef.com $150,000 GreatDomains
12.  SSM.com $145,000 Pvt Sale
13.  IQTest.de     €123,625 = $147,635 Sedo
14. TourismAustralia.com AUD $201,000 = US$146,200 Pvt Sale
15.  Sexkontakte.de
"Sex contacts" in German
 €110,000 = $141,175 Sedo
16.  MR.com $125,000 GreatDomains
17.  Truck.com  $101,000 Moniker / DomainSystems
18.  eCruise.com  $100,000 Pvt Sale
19.  Kreuzfahrten.de
"Cruises" in German
€70,000 = $88,853 Sedo
20.  Kazalite.com $83,500 Pool
21. Sedo.com $80,000 Private Sale
22.  BackCountry.com $75,000 Private Sale
23.  Boxen.de
"Boxing" in German
€56,500 = $72,509 Sedo
24. IFly.com  $65,000 Sedo
25.  Stop.com  $62,500 Moniker/
DomainSystems
26. ClearDay.com $60,000 Moniker / DomainSystems
27. GolfCourses.com  $55,750 Moniker/
DomainSystems
28.
tie 
FKK.de  €40,000 = $51,333 Sedo
28.
tie 
Busen.de
"Bosom" in German
 €40,000 = $51,333 Sedo
30.
tie 
Typing.com  $50,000 GreatDomains
30. 
tie
BoiseRealEstate.com $50,000 Moniker/
DomainSystems
30.
tie 
Harmony.com $50,000 GreatDomains
30.
tie
Mirror.com $50,000 Moniker / DomainSystems
34. CarFinancing.com $46,000 Pool
35. Hardcore.co.uk £25,000 = $45,951 Sedo
36. Mingle.com  $45,000 GreatDomains
37. Meningitis.com $45,000 Private Sale
38.
tie
Robots.com  $40,000 GreatDomains
38.
tie
Claims.com  $40,000 GreatDomains
40.  Mister.com    $38,800 Pvt Sale
41. Faces.com $38,700 Moniker / DomainSystems
42. Metropol.com €30,500 = $38,230 Sedo

43. 

Nackt.de
"Nude or Naked" in German
€30,000 = $38,081 Sedo
44. FoodPoisoning.com $36,500 Pvt Sale
45.  Fotos.com €30,000 = $35,793 Private Sale
46. WesternAustralia.com AU$50,000 = $35,178 Pvt Sale
47.  Cairo.com $35,001 Sedo
48.
tie 
SinglesTravel.com $35,000 Pvt Sale
48. 
tie
Miss.com $35,000 Afternic
48.
tie
Spamzilla.com $35,000 MarketEvolver
51.  Low.com $32,640 Moniker/
DomainSystems
52.  Refurbished.com  $32,000 Pool
53. CleanEnergy.com $31,950 Moniker / DomainSystems
54. Humor.de €25,520 = $30,449 Sedo
55.  EducationEssentials.com    $30,375 Moniker/
DomainSystems
56.  Single.co.uk  €24,600 = $30,341 Sedo
57.  DiscountDrugs.com $30,010 Namewinner
58.
tie
Cocina.com
"kitchen/cooking in Spanish"
$30,000 Pvt Sale
58.
tie
Cursor.com  $30,000 Sedo
58.
tie 
WebsiteDevelopment.com  $30,000 DotcomAgency
58. 
tie
DCJobs.com  $30,000 Pvt Sale
58.
tie 
CN.tv $30,000 Sedo
58.
tie 
AntiDepressants.com $30,000 Private Sale
58.
tie
Gray.com $30,000 GreatDomains
58.
tie
Actor.com $30,000 Sedo
66.  NewYork.info €22,000 = $28,086 Sedo
67.  Headstones.com    $28,000 Pool
Unforgettable Footnotes:
Below are landmark sales where the price level (denoted by X characters) was released but not the exact price paid. This will allow us to note significant sales that are among the Year-To-Date leaders but cannot be ranked numerically due  to a confidentiality agreement that kept the exact price private. Date shown indicates when the sale was first reported in Domain Name Journal. High - Mid - Low indicates the range within the price category shown by multiple X's.
Juegos.com (June 29, 2004) High $XXX,XXX Pvt Sale
Woman.com (Feb. 10, 2004) Low $XXX,XXX Sedo
CellularPhones.com (May 11, 2004) Low $XXX,XXX Pvt Sale
Spanish.com (Sept. 8, 2004) Low $XXX,XXX Pvt Sale
IS.com (May 4, 2004)  (No range) $XXX,XXX Pvt Sale
Bόcher.de (Mar. 16, 2004)
{"books" in German)
High $XX,XXX Sedo


New TLD Section

It was a big news week for the new extensions, headlined by the largest .biz sale reported to date. You've already seen it on the mainstream Top Ten but Gay.biz returns to take a bow at the top of our New TLD chart (as well as one on our Year To Date leader's list). That was one of six 4-figure sales that were made public this week. I personally had another one in that range but the European buyer asked to keep it confidential. All I can tell you is it would have been one of the best 3-letter .info sales reported this year and it was a quality letter combination that deserved the price. 

This week's chart is very evenly divided with .biz and .info each having three entries and .us claiming the other two. Models.us got the #2 spotlight after going for $2,000 at Afternic (a great buy for the winning bidder in my opinion). Container.info was third, changing hands for $1,668 at Sedo. Afternic and .biz were back at #4 thanks to Affiliate.biz which went for $1,400.

While I was unable to release my biggest sale, I did have two other four-figure sales this week that I can report. Those were Diversity.info and OSI.biz which each went for $1,000 to tie for 5th on the new chart. I also received the first payment toward the $1,200 purchase of Zero.us (that one is ineligible for the chart until all payments have been made). It is only the second time I have agreed to an installment arrangement but when I am approached by motivated developers that will put more live new TLD sites online I think it is worthwhile to try to work around their budgetary constraints. The theory of course is that the more live sites we have, the more recognition will grow for the extension, increasing the value of the other names in our portfolio.

Here is a look at the complete New TLD chart for the week ending Nov. 7:

Domain Name Journal's New TLD Great 8 
  Reported .info, .biz & .us Domain Sales  Nov. 1, 2004 - Nov. 7, 2004
Euro to Dollar Conversion (€ to $) is Based on Rates in Effect Tue. Nov. 9

  Domain

Sold For

Where Sold
1. Gay.biz   $9,500 Sedo
2. Models.us      $2,000 Afternic
3.  Container.info   €1,293 = $1,668 Sedo
4. Affiliate.biz      $1,400 Afternic
5.
tie
Diversity.info         $1,000 Pvt Sale
5.
tie
OSI.biz  $1,000 Pvt Sale
7. Brotherhood.info  $800 Pvt Sale
8. Phillips.biz  €500 = $645 Sedo

Brotherhood.info and Phillips.biz closed out this week's Great 8 at $800 and $645 respectively. There has been a considerable amount of debate in the domain forums about whether or not Afilias' recent move to give .info domains away at no charge would harm the overall value of names in that extension. My opinion is that it will have no affect on quality names. Over a million .infos had already been registered before the promotion began so the better names were long gone when Afilias made the move (apparently hoping more people would register and develop .infos if they got some free ones to play with). I have seen no evidence that this has dented prices of good .infos. If someone gave away a car lot full of used Yugos would that make Ferraris cheaper? I don't think so.

The offers are still coming regularly and at increasingly higher prices. In fact one of the most active buyers in this space, England's Stuart Smith, just turned down a $6,000 offer for SunScreen.info (I have seen the papers documenting the offer). As a side note, Smith was also recently involved in a $9,800 transaction for a .us domain but cannot release the name. The point is that good names in all extensions will continue to attract interest and cash offers regardless of what is being done with mediocre or poor names in those TLDs.

Our Year-To-Date New TLD chart gets a new member this week. Gay.biz joins the party in a tie for the 7th position after that healthy $9,500 sale. Here are all of the top reported 2004 new extension sales through Nov. 7: 

Domain Name Journal's Year-To-Date New TLD Top 34 
Highest Reported 2004 .info, .biz & .us Domain Sales through Nov. 7 
Euro to Dollar Conversion (€ to $) 
Based on Rates in Effect When Sales Were Originally Reported by DNJ

 - Domains entering the chart this week are highlighted in green -

  Domain

Sold For

Where Sold
1.  NewYork.info   €22,000 = $28,086 Sedo
2. Casino.info €17,500 = $20,899 Sedo
3.  HMS.info €9,280 = $10,492 Sedo
4.
tie
Tampa.info $10,000 Pvt Transaction

4.
tie

Moscow.info $10,000 Sedo
6. SolarStrom.info
("solar energy" in German)
 €8,000 = $9,802 Sedo
7.
tie
Gay.biz   $9,500 Sedo
7.
tie
Vitamins.info $9,500 Afternic
9. RioDeJaneiro.info $9,000 Pvt Sale
10. Stocks.us $8,062 Sedo
11. Erickson.info   $7,500 Moniker/
DomainSystems
12.  Party.info   €6,000 = $7,166 Sedo
13. Book.biz $7,000 Galcomm
14. BDSM.info €5,500 = $6,947 Sedo
15. Reifen.biz
"tires" in German
 €5,500 = $6,894 Sedo
16. Vancouver.info €5,000 = $6,378 Sedo
17. Party.us $6,000 Pvt Sale
18. Beach.info     €5,000 = $5,972 Sedo
19.
tie
Finanzen.info
("Finances" in German)
€4,900 = $5,888 Sedo
19. 
tie
Steuer.info
("Tax" in German)
  €4,900 = $5,888 Sedo
21. InvestmentFonds.info
("investment funds" in German)
  €4,750 = $5,673 Sedo
22. Vacations.info $5,500 Pvt Sale
23.
tie
Woman.info $5,000 Sedo
23.
tie
Michigan.info     $5,000 Pvt Sale
23.
tie
Minnesota.info  $5,000 Pvt Sale
26. Erotica.info €4,000 = $4,913 Sedo
27. KFZ.info  €4,000 = $4,873 Sedo
28. CityGuide.info €4,000 = $4,773 Sedo
29.
tie
Meningite.biz
("Meningitis in French & Italian)
$4,250 Sedo
29.
tie
Meningite.info
("Meningitis in French & Italian)
$4,250 Sedo
31.  Grafik.info   €3,500 = $4,249 Sedo
32.
tie
Houston.info $4,000 Pvt Sale
32.
tie
Washington.info $4,000 Pvt Sale
32.
(tie)
ETC.info   $4,000 Pvt Sale
Unforgettable Footnotes:
Below are key sales where the price level (denoted by X characters) was released but not the exact price paid. This will allow us to note significant sales that are among the Year-To-Date leaders but cannot be ranked numerically due  to a confidentiality agreement that kept the exact price private. Date shown indicates when the sale was first reported in Domain Name Journal
Fashion.us (May 25, 2004)  $XX,XXX Private Sale

As always, we welcome all verifiable sales reports from companies, private sellers or individuals with knowledge of an important sale made through any channel. To contribute information and help make this column better,  just drop a note to editor@dnjournal.com.

We truly appreciate the industry leading companies represented on our charts who share their sales information with us to help everyone in the business get a handle on current domain values. Individuals like Richard Meyer of the American Marketing Corporation also provide invaluable help by sending us data for these sales reports each week.

Every Tuesday we publish the highest reported domain name sales for the previous week. On Monday our contributors send us their sales data for the previous 7 days. We then compile that information and write this report for Tuesday publication to give you the freshest sales report in the industry. 

We will close with this standard caution. These are not average selling prices - these are top selling domains. One of the biggest impediments to making sales is pricing domains at unrealistic levels. For most of us, pricing domains at the levels achieved on the Top Ten chart will leave us waiting a long time to make a sale! We hope you will use the information presented here as a measuring stick that will help you price your domains at levels that will put more money in your pocket more often!

Editor's Note: If you wish to review previous Domain Sales columns, they are available in our Archive.

 


 


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