Displaying posts tagged under "eNom"
Two key figures at eNom are moving on.
A longtime fixture in the domain name industry — as well as a newer hire — are leaving domain name company Rightside.
VP of Business Development Chris Sheridan is leaving the company this week to join website maker Weebly. His experience at Rightside, where he worked on the eNom business, will be highly relevant to Weebly. Prior to eNom/Rightside, the “selfie king” worked at Verisign.
Sheridan’s former clients and other external business partners will now work with Dwayne Walker, Rightside’s SVP of business and market development.
Separately, SVP & GM of Registrar Services Steve Banfield is leaving the company at the end of this month. He joined Rightside in 2013. A Rightside spokesperson provide this statement to Domain Name Wire about the transition:
Steve Banfield is leaving Rightside at the end of January as part of an organizational restructuring, and he is working with the company’s management team to ensure a smooth transition for our employees and customers. Steve’s external clients and partners on the eNom business will now work with Jeff Eckhaus, our SVP of market development. Steve’s responsibilities on the Name.com business have been transitioned to Matt Delgado, Rightside’s SVP of operations.
Rightside grows its eNom business, new TLDs generate $2.5 million in revenue as of end of Q3.
Rightside released third quarter earnings after the bell today.
Revenue for the third quarter came in at $48.8 million, up from $45.5 million in the same quarter last year and $46.7 million in the second quarter of 2014.
The company swung to a profit with a $4.1 million bottom line. However, its adjusted EBITDA — which presumably is a key metric it wants to be valued on — was ($0.6) million.
A particular bright spot for the company was moving the needle in its domain name registration business. Organic growth (excluding the Name.com acquisition) in domain services was 10.5% due to onboarding more eNom wholesale partners. Rightside had been having trouble growing this fairly mature business.
On the new top level domain front, Rightside recorded a gain of $8.6 million for withdrawing seven applications for new top level domain names.
As of the end of the quarter, Rightside had 15 top level domains out in general availability for an average of 89 days each. The company had generated over 80,000 registrations with almost $2.5 million in total cash sales. That’s an average of above $30 per domain name. While many of its domains have a wholesale price of $20, its initial sales include sunrise and landrush/EAP pricing. It also sells some domains for premium prices.
Niche resellers and registrars are key for selling industry-specific domain names.
Many of the new top level domain names coming to market are targeted to particular industries: .photography for photographers, .plumbing for plumbers, .solar for the solar industry.
Selling these domain names through mass market domain name registrars is tricky. The domain names are unlikely to come up high in search results unless a particular keyword closely matches the TLD. Unless the customer is aware of the top level domain and specifically searching for it, she is unlikely to find it.
To better target the industries their domain names are made for, domain registries need to work with industry-specific channel partners.
Taken to another level, a domain name registrar or reseller that specifically targets the industry.
Enter Momentum Names.
I received a LinkedIn alert today that Matt Godson of Momentum Event Group was now also CEO of Momentum Names.
Momentum Names is an eNom reseller specifically specializing in the sale of two of Rightside’s upcoming domain names, .lawyer and .attorney. This is a good target for Momentum given its network amongst lawyers for its conferences.
I think this is a great idea for businesses that already sell products and services into a particular industry. For example, if I provided booking software for cab companies, it would make sense to set up a niche reseller selling .cab and .limo domain names.
Rightside’s debut as its own publicly-traded company is imminent.
Demand Media plans to complete the spin-off of its domain name business on August 1.
Rightside will become its own public company on that date. It will trade on the NASDAQ under the symbol “name”.
Demand Media shareholders will receive one Rightside share for each five shares of Demand Media stock they own.
Rightside owns a number of domain name businesses covering the entire spectrum of the domain name business:
Registry Service – Rightside Registry provides domain name registry services to new TLD operators including Donuts and itself.
Registry – the company is an applicant for many of its own new TLDs. It will probably operate around 50 of its own top level domain names, including .ninja and .democrat.
Domain Registration – Rightside owns both the largest reseller registrar (eNom) and a large retail registrar (Name.com).
Domain Parking – the company owns domain parking company Hotkeys. It also parks a number of domains on its registrar platforms.
Expired domains and aftermarket sales – NameJet is a 50/50 partnership between Rightside and Web.com.
Domainer – Rightside is also a domainer investor with over 300,000 owned and operated domain names.
Blocking could lead to website suspensions.
Beginning January 1st domain name registrars are required by the new Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) to verify contact details for registrants.
Most registrars do this by sending an email to domain registrants and asking them to click a link in the email. For the registrant fails to do this, their domain names can be suspended.
This has resulted in at least one high profile website being suspended, and more will certainly meet this fate.
Now it appears many of these verification emails are being blocked by major email services.
eNom just sent a notice to its resellers stating that a who’s who of email providers — AOL, Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail — are blocking verification emails that eNom is sending on behalf of resellers.
It’s going to fix this problem by sending verification notices directly to registrants using an eNom email address.
This is another example of how this ill-conceived verification requirement can ensnare legitimate domain registrants.