The Sales Roundup, GoDaddy’s July Sales, Part 1: Why Fanbase.com Sold for $151,000 & More

Last week, GoDaddy released its monthly sales data for July 2020, disclosing some healthy sales figures between $32,000 and $151,000. In this week’s Sales Roundup, I’m looking at five sales from GoDaddy’s list to see why they may have achieved the prices they did, as well as finding out who acquired these domains.

 

Fanbase.com – $151,000

The largest disclosed GoDaddy sale on the list happened at GoDaddy Auctions. In fact, this was an expiry auction. The largest expiry auction sale to successfully close at GoDaddy Auctions.

The fact that Fanbase.com sold for $151,000 means there was at least one other bidder seemingly willing to pay a six-figure sum for this name.

Strangely, the sale actually occurred in August 2020 rather than July 2020, but regardless, the sale closed with GoDaddy’s Paul Nicks announcing that the winning bidder paid for the name within a matter of days.

At $151,000, you might assume that Fanbase.com was acquired by an end-user. You’d be right. The name was acquired by Fanbase GMBH, a newly formed German company headed by Stefan Wiegard, a serial entrepreneur who has also founded companies such as Team Internet — a domain services group acquired by CentralNIC.

As of writing, Fanbase.com holds a landing page for Fanbase’s new venture, a platform for content creators to monetize their content and to interact with fans. Fanbase GMBH also owns Fanbase.de and Fanbase.ch. Fanbase.com achieved a $151,000 price tag thanks to a couple of interested parties, with the ultimate auction winner having a clear monetization plan in which Fanbase.com plays a key part.

 

ZCG.com – $140,000

Six-figure sales of three-letter .COM’s happen more regularly than you may think. In GoDaddy’s June 2020 release, we saw that WBS.com sold for $115,000, one of seven three-letter .COM’s to sell for over $100,000 in 2020.

This signifies that while three-letter .COM’s routinely trade in the five-figure range among investors, six-figure sales to end-users should be expected.

That’s certainly the case with ZCG.com. The domain was acquired by ZCG, also known as Z Capital Group, an investment firm that has around $3 billion worth of assets under management.

This was an upgrade for ZCG, who started out on the frankly hideous ZCapGroup.net before upgrading to ZCG.net early in 2020.

The acquisition of ZCG.net may have been a stop-gap while ZCG went about acquiring ZCG.com.

ZCG.com may have been more difficult for Z Capital Group to acquire since it was in use by Zinck Computer Group of Nova Scotia, Canada.

 

Wallpapers.com – $129,500

I find Wallpapers.com to be an awkward name with very narrow development opportunities. Wallpaper.com, unquestionably a great versatile brand name. But Wallpapers.com? It just doesn’t roll off the tongue. However, someone loved the name enough to pay $129,500 for it.

Maybe I’m being a little harsh. Looking back at plural one-word .COM sales from the last five years, we have the likes of Crystals.com for $188,000, Tasks.com for $130,000, and Emeralds.com for $125,000. Although I’d still say these three names have far more value than Wallpapers.com.

There may be some SEO value to Wallpapers.com, as Moz.com shows that it has a domain authority of 58, and 12,500 linking root domains. This may be a lingering result of the previous development of Wallpapers.com, which shut down a few years ago.

Regardless, Wallpapers.com was acquired by a company in Hong Kong, although I can find out very little about the person or group behind the company. All I can find is the fact that Wallpapers.com shares an address with a watch company, BestWatch.com.hk.

As of writing, the site doesn’t seem to be fully functional, and I can’t see an obvious revenue model to warrant the $129,500 price tag.

 

iAgent.com – $102,000

iAgent.com sounds like a name that Apple may have considered acquiring in the early 2000s. However, in 2020, iAgent.com was acquired by MagnifiCo Inc for $102,000.

As far as I can tell, the name was acquired by MagnifiCo’s founder, Don Cisternino who is an established talent manager. Don is also CEO of TLA Talent & Literary Agency.

I spoke to Don this week who said that iAgent.com is going to be used as the destination for a new project he’s launching. That project calls on his vast experience in the talent and literary agency business to “help automate and improve efficiencies, and to make the entertainment industry more transparent – a safe place for creative people to develop and share their projects.”

It sounds like iAgent.com is going to be the base for an ambitious project that could be transformative for the entertainment industry.

The buyer knows the agency industry better than most, and so was fully prepared to spend a significant sum on the right domain.

The seller in this deal was Contrib, a company lead by renowned domain investor and industry veteran Chad Folkening. His company previously sold Streaming.com and Streaming.net to Amazon.

 

GreenGarden.com – $80,000

The acquisition of GreenGarden.com was thanks to a rebrand. The company was formerly known as Plantation Products until earlier this year when they quietly rebranded to Green Garden.

Green Garden is the owner of numerous garden brands selling seeds, growing systems, and nutrient products.

The reason for the rebrand is difficult to decipher. The only obvious reason may be that Plantation Products was a name just too close to slavery. It’s plausible since The Dixie Chicks and Lady Antebellum both changed their band names in 2020 due to apparent slavery links.

I contacted Green Garden to see if I could get any further information, but I haven’t had a response yet.

Part two of The Sales Roundup: The GoDaddy July 2020 Edition will be published in a couple of weeks.

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