GoDaddy’s latest patent applications

Company adds to its stack of pending patents.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has just published a handful of patent applications filed by GoDaddy.

Methods and Systems for Recommending Packages of Domain Names for Registration (application 14/500711) is a continuation of patents I wrote about earlier this month. It essentially describes a way to determining which domain names a user will want and presenting them as a package.

Two others are related to submitting an offer for a domain name when it is already registered: System for Communicating an Offer for a Domain Names (application 13/973823) and Method for Communicating an Offer for a Domain Name (application 13/973819). If the domain name you want is already registered, the registrar will ask if you want to submit an offer on the domain name.

The general crux of these two patent applications doesn’t seem novel (at least looking at what registrars have been doing for the past five years or so), but perhaps there are some claims within them that are unique.

GoDaddy releases earnings, picks GDDY ticker

Domain name registrar gets one step closer to IPO.

GoDaddyGoDaddy filed an amended S-1 statement with the SEC today that revealed fourth quarter and full year 2014 financials, as well as the company’s planned NYSE stock ticker GDDY.

Fourth quarter revenue at the company grew to $371.7 million, up from $356.9 million in the third quarter and $305.9 million in the same quarter of 2013. The company reported a net loss of ($26.8) million for the quarter, about in line with the third quarter.

For the year, total revenue increased $256.4 million, or 22.7%, to $1.4 billion. The company reported a loss of ($143.3) million for the year. (The company reports an adjusted EBITDA number that is positive.)

Total customers increased 1.1 million on the year to hit 12.7 million.

While the domain name business continues to grow, it makes up a smaller percentage of the company’s business each quarter as the hosting and business application segments grow at a faster clip.

I ran the amended S-1 through Intelligize’s comparison tool. Most of the changes were related to security and compensation.

How to Get the Lowest Prices at GoDaddy

GoDaddy has a bunch of pricing tiers and discounts. The best deal depends a lot on the size of your domain name portfolio.

DiscountIf you’re a domainer, you shouldn’t be paying list price for domain name registrations at GoDaddy (or any registrar, for that matter).

Since a lot of readers use GoDaddy, I thought it worthwhile to run down the various discount options at the registrar.

Price is one of the most important considerations when choosing a domain name registrar, according to last year’s Domain Name Wire survey. (Pssst…take this year’s here.) GoDaddy doesn’t always win on pricing, but below are some of the ways to make sure you’re not overpaying. Click here to continue reading…

GoDaddy amends IPO filing

GoDaddy updates S-1, but it doesn’t include final 2014 financials.

GoDaddy filed an amended S-1 statement with the Securities & Exchange Commission today.

I’ll save you a couple hours of combing over the new document for changes…there aren’t many, unless you’re fascinated by GoDaddy’s corporate and shareholder structure and its investors’ plans to minimize taxes.

Using Intelligize’s Smart Compare feature, I compared the current S-1 to the previous one filed November 17. Essentially, the majority of changes are related to tax distributions and Tax Receivable Agreements (TRAs).

The filing doesn’t include full year results for 2014, which I expect to be filed within the next few weeks. I’ll write about the updated results when they become available.

GoDaddy is expected to go public in the first half of this year.

Web design company sues GoDaddy over “It’s Go Time” slogan

Company says it was using the slogan first.

A small web development company is suing GoDaddy over its “It’s Go Time” slogan, arguing that it started using the moniker well before GoDaddy adopted it.

Plaintiff The Easy Life, LLC runs GoWeb1. The company says it is actually a reseller of GoDaddy’s domain name services. It alleges that it has had the same account manager at GoDaddy and has been emailing newsletters to that account manager — including the It’s Go Time slogan – since at least October 2011.

GoDaddy applied for a trademark on “It’s Go Time” in 2013 on an intent-to-use basis, and started using the slogan shortly thereafter.

The plaintiff has filed multiple oppositions to GoDaddy’s trademark application.

GoWeb1’s website prominently displays “It’s Go Time” in a couple places, as you can see in the image. However, it may have ramped up this use after GoDaddy filed its trademark application. Archive.org is down at the time I’m writing this, but a Screenshot.com image from late 2012 doesn’t show the slogan on its home page. It shows up in the next screenshot at the end of 2013. The GoWeb1.com “It’s Go Time” slogan has a forward slanting font similar to the one GoDaddy is using.

The lawsuit (pdf) doesn’t have exhibits showing how the company has using “It’s Go Time” for its marketing.

The Easy Life argues that GoDaddy’s use of the term can “damage Plaintiff’s impeccable reputation”:

On information and belief, Defendant’s annual revenues exceed over one billion dollars. Defendant, with its vast resources, is well positioned to exploit and trade on the goodwill which Plaintiff has developed in the IT’S GO TIME mark, as well as damage Plaintiff’s impeccable reputation. Relevant consumers will come upon Defendant’s Services offered in connection with the IT’S GO TIME mark and will likely believe that such services are associated or affiliated with, or endorsed or sponsored by Plaintiff, which they are not. Indeed, viewership estimates of the 2015 Super Bowl during which Defendant broadcast an advertisement exceed 100 million viewers.