“51” domains can be used in many ways.
No, it’s not really me wanting to acquire domains related to c-suite (titles starting with “c”) executives. It is about such domains starting with the prefix “51”.
I have already written about such domains in the article “Say 51 if you want something in China“. By chance, I came across another “51” domain again when I was reading Chinese venture capital news today.
The news mentioned 51CTO, a professional training and IT technology provider targeting CTOs (Chief Technology Officer). The company was founded in 2005 and has already secured 17 million registered users. It has also received multiple rounds of investment, including the $20 million Series C funding completed recently.
51CTO.com was registered in 2005, suggesting that the domain was acquired for about $10 only. What a low-cost way to start a global business! 51 rhymes with the Pinyin phrase Wo Yao (我要=I want), so 51CTO may imply “I want CTOs”.
Naturally, I wanted to find out what happened to other c-suite domains. Below is the result.
|Chief Executive Officer||51CEO.com||2012||Developed|
|Chief Operating Officer||51COO.com||2011||Not resolve|
|Chief Financial Officer||51CFO.com||2010||Access issue|
|Chief Information Officer||51CIO.com||2007||Not resolve|
|Chief Marketing Officer||51CMO.com||2014||Not resolve|
|Chief Data Officer||51CDO.com||2015||For sale|
|Chief Security Officer||51CSO.com||2019||Not resolve|
It seems that “51” domains are popular in China and many of them were registered many years ago. The drawback of such domains, however, is that their meanings will be lost once the companies expand beyond China, making their brands/domains difficult to remember by non-Chinese consumers.
Nevertheless, China has a population that’s more than four times the size of the U.S. population. Therefore, some companies may choose to use “51” domains and focus only on the already large domestic market.