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April 22, 2015

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Here's the The Lowdown from DN Journal,
updated daily
to fill you in on the latest buzz going around the domain name industry. 

The Lowdown is compiled by DN Journal Editor & Publisher Ron Jackson.

Marchex Sells Over 200,000 Domains to Go Daddy - Will Now Focus on Mobile Advertising Analytics

Marchex, Inc. (NASDAQ: MCHX), who in recent years has morphed from a major domain sales and development company into a mobile advertising analytics company, has sold off the bulk of its remaining domain portfolio. Marchex announced this morning that they have entered into a definitive agreement to sell more than 200,000 domains to GoDaddy Inc. (NYSE: GDDY), for $28.1 million, as well as additional earn-out considerations subject to certain sales targets. The company also reported moving another $6.7 million in direct domain sales since January 2015 when

it began liquidating its portfolio in earnest. Go Daddy is widely recognized as the world's biggest domain registrar but they have expanded their service offerings dramatically in recent years and now think of themselves as the world’s largest technology provider dedicated to small businesses.

Pete Christothoulou
CEO, Marchex, Inc.

Marchex CEO Pete Christothoulou said, "Our complete focus is on establishing Marchex as the world’s leading mobile advertising analytics company. A significant and growing majority of the consumer engagement and sales driven by mobile advertising happens offline, such as through phone calls.  Narrowing our focus on this opportunity, while growing our balance sheet, strengthens our ability to continue delivering technology solutions that bring accountability to mobile advertising and transform business performance for our clients.”

Marchex provided some additional information on the transaction in a series of bullet points, stating: 

  • From a revenue standpoint, our domains assets have generated more than $290 million in cumulative revenue (excluding domain sales) and meaningful profits, so they have been a valuable and important part of Marchex’s history.

  • We’ve used some of the cash flow generated from our domains assets to fund the development of Marchex’s market-leading Call Analytics Platform, which now generates more than $100 million annually and is the foundation of our business going forward. So in essence, the cash generated from the domains and other assets has helped enable Marchex to build a strong leadership position in a growing market of mobile advertising analytics.

  • In addition, with today’s announcement, Marchex has sold $80 million in domains through today in separate transactions.

  • It’s important to note that what we announced selling today is NOT directly comparable to what we acquired in 2004, as we have sold certain assets since that time.  

  • During the past decade, Marchex has enjoyed being part of the domains marketplace and we believe that it remains robust and entrepreneurial, with plenty of room for growth and innovation. However, our business has evolved to where domains are not core to Marchex’s focus on mobile advertising analytics, so the time was right for us to sell our portfolio. Our complete focus is on establishing Marchex as the world’s leading mobile advertising analytics company. 

  • It is a win for both parties, as GoDaddy gets a high-quality portfolio and we can now focus entirely on our core business.  Furthermore, now interested parties will be able to find and purchase high-quality domains that were in our portfolio through GoDaddy.  

(Posted April 22, 2015)


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