Although the 25 travel themed premium NYC domains that were announced last month to go to auction included BroadwayTickets.nyc, this gem was snapped up (before the auction start) – for $25,000. It’s another great sale and further demonstrates the strength of .NYC almost 4 years after it launched.
Quick note: if it’s before 1pm on May 10th, when you’re reading this, you may still have time to grab a premium travel themed .NYC domain at Sedo.
I recently wrote about the premium travel themed domain auction highlighting the 25 names that are up for grabs and I did a follow up article called, “Premium NYC Travel Domains without the Auction”. In this case it seems as though at least one person wanted one of the names scheduled for auction – without taking part in the auction! The company that bought BroadwayTickets.nyc is Broadway League Inc. and their main website is broadway.org.
The sale of BroadwayTickets.nyc was in good company with cruise.nyc, itinerary.nyc, ticket.nyc and tourist.nyc also being bought for premium prices before the auction started on May 3rd. The difference though is that BroadwayTickets.nyc was snapped up before it was due to go to the auction block (after it was announced as being in the auction, but before the auction began), while the other premiums weren’t scheduled for an auction. This caused some controversy over at OnlineDomain.com.
The article over at OnlineDomain.com was critical of Neustar and Sedo for pulling the auction:
Why? Because they can and because they found someone to pay $25,000 for a domain that had no bids (or maybe a $500 bid at most) 2 days before the auction end…
Everyone except for the people that think that the rules apply to everyone. Try cancelling a domain name auction at Sedo and see what happens…
Everyone except the domain name industry that sees 2 well known companies dive into the mud for $25k. The domaining industry that clearly demonstrates to the world that domain name auctions are NOT like any other auction…
After checking from my research it looks that not only did BroadwayTickets.nyc not have any bids, but it wasn’t present when the auction started on 5/3 – it was already pulled because of the sale. I think this makes a big difference. If there were bids, I think this would have been problematic. However, further research shows that Neustar is very transparent about the sales of premium domains including those heading for the auction block:
Neustar FAQs – Can I buy a .nyc Premium Domain Name before a scheduled auction?
When .nyc Premium Domain Names are not included in a themed auction, they will be available through some of the most reputable Aftermarket providers in the industry. Prior to the announcement of any themed auction, your desired .nyc web address can be easily searched and acquired at listed Buy-Now prices from an Aftermarket provider or through .NYC RETAILERS where aftermarket listings are also included.
Once a .nyc themed auction is announced, and prior to the start date of any auction, .nyc Premium Domain Names may still be acquired at a Premium Buy-Now price. After an auction period is announced for a particular .nyc Premium Domain Name, the Buy-Now price will include an increased premium fee (generally 25% of the listed Buy-Now price) to remove a .nyc Domain Name from an announced auction. You may only acquire a .nyc Premium Domain Name that has been announced for an upcoming auction from the Auction Provider. Please contact the current Auction Provider for more details on how to acquire and remove a .nyc Premium Domain from an announced auction. For information on the current Auction Provider, please see HOW IT WORKS.
Lastly, if a .nyc themed auction is in the open bidding period, the only way to acquire your desired .nyc Premium Domain Name is to participate in the auction and place the winning bid during the scheduled .nyc auction period.
While I can see how some potential bidders of domains heading for auction may be frustrated that a domain they were interested in is sold before it gets there, I think the second paragraph above outlines how it’s possible that a name could still be snapped up pre-auction, for a premium. The third paragraph also adds some reassurance that once the open bidding period begins (I’m assuming even if no bids on the domain have been made) the domain cannot be removed from the auction and sold.
My take on this sale is that it was all above board and nothing underhanded because the scenario was outlined in the FAQs and also the sale was concluded before the auction started. I’ve also noticed that it isn’t uncommon for physical items, whether it’s an antique clock, a classic car or even a house to be removed from auction moments before bidding begins.
The premium auction process still provides some very undervalued domains that go through the auctions and maybe in future we’ll see more of the domains being snapped up before the auctions. There were also names in the previous premium tech themed NYC domain auctions, the fashion themed NYC domain auctions and the real estate themed NYC domain auctions that sold at or close to the reserve of $500 that I often kick myself for not bidding.
Final auction prices of many domains completely undervalued and offering endusers and incredible chance of a meaningful premium domain:
- rings.nyc – sold for $500
- shirts.nyc – sold for $500
- shoes.nyc – sold for $500
- sneakers.nyc – sold for $500
- suits.nyc – sold for $500
- salon.nyc – sold for $500
- stylist.nyc – sold for $525
- webdesign.nyc – sold for $550
- consultants.nyc – sold for $500
- contractors.nyc – sold for $500
- designs.nyc – sold for $500
- wireless.nyc – sold for $500
- brownstones.nyc – sold for $530
- construction.nyc – sold for $500
- coops.nyc – sold for $520
- renovation.nyc – sold for $630
- sublet.nyc – sold for $560
Here are a few other final auction prices of domains that were picked up for decent prices:
- vc.nyc – sold for $1,750
- ux.nyc – sold for $2,150
- startup.nyc – sold for $3,300
- web.nyc – sold for $8,638
- deals.nyc – sold for $4,100
- models.nyc – sold for $2,563
- photographer.nyc – sold for $2,200
- jewelry.nyc – sold for $1,700
- condos.nyc – sold for $4,600
- homes.nyc – sold for $3,200
- lease.nyc – sold for $4,100
- rentals.nyc – sold for $5,700
Below are some of the domains that reached fairly high prices:
- broadwaytickets.nyc – sold for $25,000 (sold before the auction started)
- shop.nyc – sold for $33,500
- fashion.nyc – sold for $37,000 (sale not completed)
- apartments.nyc – sold for $16,155
- realestate.nyc – sold for $21,300
So maybe BroadwayTickets.nyc would have sold for more than $25k if it went to auction – we’ll never know.
Full disclosure – I’m biased. I’m a huge fan of .NYC and I built this website to celebrate the .NYC domainspace. I’m also an accidental investor in .NYC domains now owning more than 600+ of them. Believe it or not I am also very risk averse – but feel incredibly safe in my .NYC investment and web development strategy – plus I have sales which are keeping me close to break even with the yearly domain renewals.
I’ll probably bid on the low end for a few of these domains tomorrow and what I’m about to say won’t do me any favors if I encourage competition, but here goes anyway.
There are very few domain investors in NYC and the nexus requirements prevent a lot of speculation! There I’ve said it. It’s a huge factor in domains like many of those listed above selling for $500. The nexus requirement for registrants of .NYC domains to live or work in NYC is dramatically suppressing the final auction prices of these domains. If you’re a business/end-user/individual in a field connected to any of the premium domain themes, you should be bidding on all related domains – especially those trading at < $1,000.
If you’re not sure about bidding on some of these domains, before the auction closes in about 12 hours, keep this in mind — although some of these domains may sell for mid-high x,xxx possibly breaking into xx,xxx throughout all previous auctions there have been names that either don’t hit the reserve of $500 and other names as shown above that have a single bid of $500 — after the auction, you will not be able to reach out to the registry for a deal – I’ve tried and the price only goes up :). Even for the domains that may end up with a non-paying bidder won’t be available at that same price again. So if you’re interested in one of the domains the auction is your best bet to get a great deal – unless that is, you have bigger pockets and $25k to grab the domain before it goes into auction!
If you decide to bid – Good Luck!