Domain company continues aggressive growth; receives $150M investment.
Oversee.net, parent company of DomainSponsor, SnapNames, and Moniker, expects to close a $150M investment round with Oak Hill Capital Partners by the end of the month.
Oversee.net has been on an aggressive growth trajectory over the past year. In January 2007, the company scored a $60M line of credit from Bank of America. This was partially used to purchase SnapNames this past summer. Earlier this month, Oversee.net announced that it purchased domain registrar Moniker.com.
The growth hasn’t been undaunted, however. In October, Network Solutions and eNom launched a new expired domain service called NameJet to compete with SnapNames. The two registrars had exclusive deals with SnapNames but apparently used a change-of-control clause in the contract to back out.
But expired domains are losing their luster as domain owners get more savvy about renewing domains. It’s rare to see high profile generic domains expire these days. SnapNames saw the writing on the wall, and prior to the acquisition started auctioning non-expiring domains. SnapNames will hold a live auction in conjunction with Oversee.net’s DomainFEST later this month.
The Moniker acquisition was a big coup for Oversee.net as it was able to grab hold of one of the most popular registrars for big domainers. It also gives them the most successful live auction provider, which it can now integrate with SnapNames. This is good news for domain buyers, too. Moniker had success with live auctions but its backend systems and process for completing the auction transactions were slow and manual. Integrating with SnapNames will make this process smoother.
Oversee.net is starting to cross-market across its companies. Yesterday, Oversee.net announced that DomainSponsor customers will receive 2% bonuses in the form of rebates that can be used on purchases at its family of companies including Moniker and SnapNames. Moniker’s previous owner, Seevast, didn’t seem to take advantage of the cross-marketing opportunity with the popular registrar.
Oak Hill Capital Partners is a 21-year-old private investment firm with more than $7B in committed capital. Its lead investor is Robert M. Bass.