Some people actually register domain names as investments, which for the right name, can pay off handsomely. For example, whoever originally registered fb.com, eventually got lucky and sold out to Facebook (FB) for $8.5 million. The person who owned loans.com sold to Bank of America (BAC) for $3 million, with mortgage.com going to Citigroup (C) for $1.8 million. There are many other high priced domain sales that can be found in the Stock Market Trivia book.
Donald Trump, the outspoken and currently lead-running Republican presidential candidate, owns the DonaldTrump.com domain of course. Well technically, the registration shows the ownership as the General Counsel of The Trump Organization, originally registered back on March 7, 1999. It is registered through GoDaddy (GDDY).
But when a friend hinted that I check out the owner of DonaldTrumpSucks.com, I expected that it might have been registered by a Republican opponent or possibly someone on the Democratic side. Yet it turns out that this domain is also owned by The Trump Organization.
What is interesting is that this particular domain was registered on Christmas Eve, December 24, 2014. Was that the day that Trump really decided to run? This domain was also registered through GoDaddy.
Now it is all over the news that Trump's company has registered over 3,000 domain names, and according to an article by the International Business Times, the organization buys tens of thousands of domains every year.
Some of these purchases are for legitimate purchases. For example:
Trump isn't buying all of them them for investment though. Apparently, many are purchased for guarding against "predators." Here are some of the domains acquired by Trump:
All of the above point to a generic GoDaddy web page. However, it is interesting to note that if you go to TrumpSucks.com, it brings you to Trump's campaign web page at donaldjtrump.com. TrumpSucks was registered back in the year 2000 and its current registrar is Domain.com.
The problem with acquiring the anti-Trump domain names is that there are thousands variances of domain names that people can come up with. One example, that I would rather not put in writing but begins with an F is owned by an individual who apparently has had it registered since 2004. For that matter, another domain, which has as its last part, a word that begins with the letter S is also owned by an individual, and was registered just a couple years ago. Neither of these domains have developed web sites.
But even without the dirty words, there are other top level domains such as .net and .org that could be used with the anti-Trump words, As a matter of fact, an individual just registered donaldtrumpsucks.net today! And donaldtrumpsucks.org was registered exactly one month ago. Both with the registrar of, who else, GoDaddy.
I'm not sure what the intent of these individuals are. Maybe they think they can resell their domains to the Trump Organization. Have fun dealing with the Trump lawyers.
But is there an investment angle to this, other than trying to find a good (bad) domain to resell to Trump? The one investment that sticks out is GoDaddy, due to its popularity as a domain registrar. Potential investors should be aware that, although the stock reported a 16.5% increase in revenues, it generated a loss of over one dollar a share for the latest quarter. Also, it carries over a billion dollars in debt.
It will be interesting to see how the Trump domain activity plays out. If anyone has any ideas on an investment angle to the Trump domains, please post in the comment section below.