Not a bad return for a domain that sold for a reported $47,000 in 1997. But
Porn.com couldn't command the payday of Sex.com, which Boston firm Escom bought
last year for more than $11 million in cash and stock.
Porn is evidently still preferred over business: Business.com sold in 1999 for
The Porn.com deal is one of many in the last two years in which common nouns
were exchanged for uncommon money. Cameras.com sold for $1.5 million and
Scores.com fetched $1.2 million. Like Porn.com, they were sold by domain broker
and manager Moniker.
The resurgence of simple domain names comes even though most people get to new
places on the Web through such search engines as Google and Yahoo. The idea is
to put ads in front of Web surfers who type "www.porn.com" into their browsers,
curious to see what's there.
Detroit-based MXN was mum on its intentions for Porn.com. But Moniker Chief
Executive Monte Cahn said the site was a proven earner even without much
content, getting more viewers clicking on ads than Sex.com enjoyed.
"People are very specific about what they're looking for," he said.
Former Sex.com owner Gary Kremen, who recently bought thousands of lower-tier
adult domain names, said MXN overpaid. "People's expectations at the very high
end are way high," he said. "It's like buying a trophy property."