L.A., Seattle, and Florida lead list of major U.S. domain company hubs.
My wife works for a company based in San Francisco, so I often tag along when she heads out there. A year ago I tried to set up meetings with Bay area domain name companies, but then I hit a roadblock: there really aren’t any. I met with the founder of NamePros, got stonewalled by Google (big surprise), and didn’t bother with VeriSign’s Mountain View office.
We’re talking about the center of the tech world, yet few domain companies are there. So it was great to find out today that Bido is moving out to the Bay Area, and I certainly understand why. (On the other hand, welcome to the world of expensive employees, high taxes, high cost of living, and high regulation!)
So where are the U.S. hotbeds for domain name companies? I generally think of Los Angeles, Seattle, and southern Florida.
Los Angeles: L.A. is home to perhaps the most big domain name companies, including Demand Media, Thought Convergence, Oversee.net, Yahoo’s domain parking group, and Domain Development Corp. Oh, and a little institution called Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers is also in the area.
Seattle: In Seattle you’ll find pioneers such as eNom and DomainTools (both owned by L.A.-based companies now), as well as DevHub, Marchex, and a number of Rob Monster’s ventures. You’re also a short drive to SnapNames, Dotster, and across the border to some of the world’s biggest domainers in Vancouver.
South Florida: The big players here are Moniker, one of Parked.com’s offices, and
Bido. But it’s also on the map because some big individual domainers call the area home.
As for my hometown of Austin? It’s mostly developers and web shops. The domainers here don’t think of themselves as domainers, but instead web developers/entrepreneurs. That may change, soon. A notable domain company is taking a look at moving here.