After Today’s TechCrunch Report, Now you See Why Meet.me At $450K Was A Bargain AMEX:MEET

TechCrunch is reporting that “social networking companies myYearbook and Quepasa which merged last year will rebrand as MeetMe.

“Starting in July, the myYearbook website, smartphone apps, tablet apps, and mobile website will all be rebranded as MeetMe.”

The company itself, currently called Quepasa Corporation, will be renamed MeetMe, and it plans to change its stock ticker symbol (it’s traded on NYSE Amex) from QPSA to MEET sometime this summer.”

QPSA has a current market value of over $159 million.

“In September, the article goes on to say that the company plans to finish internationalizing myYearbook/MeetMe into Spanish and Portuguese, and that site will be replace the existing Quepasa product.

At the time, we announced the sale of $450K for meet.me some were skeptical, others thought the price was ridiculously high other thought we just made it up.

However at the time I said, “In actuality the buyer got a great deal.”

And now you see they did.

The domain afforded them to protect and own the entire space of the re-branded company, its apps, its stock system its identity, or as the CEO of MyYearbook Geoff Cook is quoted as saying in the article:

“Having a single brand just makes it much easier to talk about the aims of the company,”

“It should help with word-of-mouth, and also give MeetMe a single name for its continued international expansion. The name even performed well in test ad campaigns that the company ran earlier.”

Like a said, the buyer got a great deal.

This is the power of an intuitive domain.

Congrats to the buyers.

 

Comments

  1. says

    It was either a very stealthy acquisition, or a big flip. Take a look at the current WHOIS of meet.me, and it’s under “DNStination Inc.”, i.e MarkMonitor’s stealth unit.

    Back when Mike sold it in November, meetme.com was owned by “Conference Plus, Inc.” (conferenceplus.com), now a unit of Arkadin. On January 15, 2012, Meetme.com changed to the WHOIS of DNStination.

    So, was Conference Plus acting on behalf of Quepasa/myYearBook all along, as a “face” for their negotiations with Mike? Or did they get approached later by Markmonitor, who bought it at an additional premium?

    If it was a stealth acquisition all along, that represents a very sophisticated approach by DNStination, and shows how tricky some buyers can be. They didn’t end up with much of a bargain, though (after all, it’s just a .me).

  2. says

    Their decision gave value to the domain, the domain did not give value to them. $450k for the domain was a great deal for the seller, not the buyer. Because if the buyer chose another name would the domain sold for $450k? It is not a domain that would generate type in traffic that would pay for itself. It is a domain that only holds high value if a company takes the time, effort, and money to brand it.

  3. Michael H. Berkens says

    Chris

    The buyer obviously had a plan and that plan revolved around branding of meetme.

    Its a $150M+ company that is not only rebranding its products but the name of its company, stock symbol and all.

    Bargain is an understatement

  4. JamesD says

    ‘MeetMe’ as a brand is slicker than ‘MeetMe.com’

    Owning the .com allows them to rebrand as MeetMe (meet.me) in the knowledge that they will also be mopping up all the leakage.

  5. WQ says

    I think they grossly overpaid.

    Just because the company has a lot of money doesn’t mean the domain is worth more or that it’s a bargain since they “still have a lot of money left”.

    Meetme.com is the domain worth the money for them. A rookie move to spend that much on the .me.

    Congrats on the sale though.

  6. says

    what i can’t wrap my mind around is that three of the richest domainers in the world had to pool their money to make a $6000 purchase. so maybe someday we’ll hear what that was all about.

  7. says

    “Its a $150M+ company that is not only rebranding its products but the name of its company, stock symbol and all.”

    Yes, but they are doing the work with the rebranding, not the domain. You can’t say “well, they are rebranding so now the domain is worth a ton and they got a good price for it”.

    Sex.com sold for big bucks because on its own, it will generate income through type in traffic, it can pay for itself without a huge amount of required input from the buyer. Meet.me will not generate anything on its own. It is the flour, but you still need the yeast, the water, and a great baker to put it all together and cook it to turn it into tasty bread. Sex.com is the bread already.

    You did a great job, you were able to get a ton of money for an asset that held very little value if it had to stand on its own.

  8. adam says

    Its so obvious that meet.me was sold for 450,000 only because buyer was not clever enough to hide his identity (as you said Michael earlier you knew who buyer was before agreement was reached). Who else would pay for meet.me 450,000?

    Michael I like your blog very much but your are talking rubbish this time and everyone sees this.

  9. David A says

    Adam, not everyone “sees it.” Like a piece of art, a domain is worth what it’s worth to the buyer. If it wasn’t worth $450K to them, they wouldn’t have paid it.

    So many people think with their ‘own wallets.’ What they paid for meet.me is equivalent to the salaries of perhaps 4 or 5 college-educated employees. In the big picture, it’s small change.

  10. Rich says

    The value it’s in the eye of the beholder and it doesn’t matter what all of you say.

    It’s almost funny,we get to say what’s worth and what’s not worth,yet we don’t have a business that’s worth $150 mil. Hmmm !!!

    RaTHeaD @
    I do think they bought more then one name.If they bought names worth $150k then it makes sense what they did,but Mike Berkens could lighten us up.

  11. Louise says

    Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! I am enjoying the comments and opinions stated here, but don’t get everyone’s questioning Meet.me’s worth!

    Little things are big things, and big things (like prices) are little things in domaining, or am I wrong?

    Good for Quepasa Corporation. There is a company that “gets it!” It isn’t branding without the trendy and brandable .me , nor did it leave out the Meetme.com to keep the brand together.

    Well done on Quepasa’s part!

  12. Back to the real Squirrel says

    It’s hard to say either way, whether the sale was a hoax or a publicity stunt cooked up by the extension owners and the it’s accomplices for publicity sake’s, without knowing the intricacies of the deal. .Co used that ruse and milked it to great benefit with the sale of O.Co to Overstock. Personally, I own a few .Me domains and prefer that extension over many other extensions, including .Co and .XXX

  13. says

    .com is all but dead or dying. Definitely on its way out.

    Makes more sense at this stage to get more short and meaningful domains in

    .Co
    .net
    .tv
    .me
    .
    .
    .

    .Co is king because of the sheer size of number of businesses, startups, and mom and pop home based companies out there.

    then you have .me which has is niche is socially related sites.

    .tv has its small niche in media

    plus 2500 other new extensions coming in a few months now.

    com is all but completely forgotten, old and stale. not hip

  14. SEm says

    Money exchanges hands and everyone calls it a “bad deal” or money “badly” spent. This is only a circulation of funds. Nothing more. Arm-chair quarterbacks yee are. Nothing more.

  15. Required says

    Regardless of what the domain may have been worth to them, it’s not clear why they should have had to do more than just beat the next best bidder. And it’s hard to imagine any other bid near $450k.

  16. says

    The dollars spent for Meet.me the domain is a fraction of the cost of a superbowl ad. I totally agree with Louise , the company gets it on all levels!! They own the .com and the .me , if or should I say when consumers start thinking of the .anything’s they will be way ahead of the curve and have the .me waiting!!! Perfect name. What did Favebook pay for Fb.me?? Same story! They get it.

    Great news for all domain investors.

  17. domain guy says

    que pasa has been around for more than a decade and floundering. John elway invested in the company lost his shirt..new management came in and made que pasa a socal network.now que pasa whats happening in english is expanding to mobile apps and my yearbook…again expanding their scale and then rebranding…450k is why schwartz got the domain price up there he understood the buyer a whale and the potential.

    the value has a lot to do with a public company easy access to cash.

  18. Snoopy says

    Its a $150M+ company that is not only rebranding its products but the name of its company, stock symbol and all.

    Bargain is an understatement

    /////////////////////////////

    If the price was the bargain then you’d like have rejected the 450k and tried for more. Obviously the price was huge in comparison to the name. Just because they have a lot of funding or the market cap is high doesn’t mean the price was a bargain. This is a name that would sell for a couple of thousand dollars normally in my view. Great job.

  19. Snoopy says

    “The dollars spent for Meet.me the domain is a fraction of the cost of a superbowl ad. I totally agree with Louise , the company gets it on all levels!! ”

    ///////////////////////

    Here is the definition of “gets it” in the domain world,

    -Company spends way too much on a particular domain (eg overstock)
    -Company buys a very high priced name and possibly overpriced (eg candy.com)

    Doesn’t matter if it was a fraction of a super bowl ad, that does not mean it was a well priced acquisition.

  20. Louise says

    Dot tv and dot me and some other ccTLD extensions have a place it imprinting a short, generic keyword domain on the mind. Meet.me is one of the few one syllable, meaningful generics that works maybe better as a brand with the dot me extension, than with dot com . . . “Meet” by itself isn’t a brand. It can be argued, Candy.com is a brand. I like Candy.com for the brand value as well as the search. Books.com, too, but Barnes & Noble simply redirects it.

    “Meet me” is a double mnemonic with the “m” sound, short, meaningful, & memorable. It rolls off the tongue. It creates a logo, even the text version: meet.me.

    As a brand, the two word dot com is a vital part of the package. The company isn’t branding simply, “meet.” It is branding, “Meet me.”

    The advertising companies who lack in domain or technical education seem more and more the weak link to the companies they represent, as well as to domainers. They have a degree in English or marketing. They seem to be giving their clients bad advice. They are rising, in my eyes, to the disconnect between end user and domainer. They are ignorant.

  21. says

    I think meet.me is a great domain. I think they overpayed for the domain and paid end user prices considering the .me brand is not yet in full swing and they bought this early. But guess it came down to the seller who knew the potential value and got it! In time it will probably be a big win win as it sounds like .me is going to become much more popular brand with both the possibility of this company and visa with v.me promoting it.

  22. L. Asher Corson says

    If the entire world understood the true value of good brandable domain name, like meet.me, nobody would be arguing that it wasn’t a bargain.

  23. Joe King says

    bit of a stretch Mike to say they got a bargain

    BECAUSE Rick Schwartz has never sold a domain name where the buyer got a bargain,

    maybe in 20 years time it might be a bargain, and that’s how Rick Schwartz prices his domain names

  24. says

    So you are saying. That if for example microsoft was going to buy 1 bottle of beer for $1 million dollars. And they did find a use to it. It will automatically become a bargain?

    If you buy a cheap domain, no matter who is the buyer. It is still a cheap domain. If a big company can use that cheap domain and brand it – it is still cheap domain with good execution.

    You don’t buy cheap domain name and name it BARGAIN just because the buyer is big company.

    Wake up.

  25. JamesD says

    @ Joe King – “bit of a stretch Mike to say they got a bargain

    BECAUSE Rick Schwartz has never sold a domain name where the buyer got a bargain,

    maybe in 20 years time it might be a bargain, and that’s how Rick Schwartz prices his domain names”

    Isn’t that what successful people / companies do – spot a bargain in advance?

    @ Adam – “Its so obvious that meet.me was sold for 450,000 only because buyer was not clever enough to hide his identity (as you said Michael earlier you knew who buyer was before agreement was reached). Who else would pay for meet.me 450,000?”

    As for the pricing of meet.me, my guess is that the figure of nearly half a million represented what the owners expected it to be worth to the best possible buyer, eg, someone with the desire and finances to create a brand around it. It’s irrelevent that the next best buyer might only have wanted to pay $25k.

    It just happens that the best possible buyer came forward pretty soon after The Three Domainateers had aquired it.

  26. Required says

    > It’s irrelevent that the next best buyer might only have wanted to pay $25k.

    It shouldn’t be. In a fair and efficient market, if the next best bidder will pay only $25k then that sets the price.

    And so what if you think that a domain may rise in value. I don’t refuse to sell my ounce of gold for $2000 just because I think it may one day be worth $10,000. I can sell it and buy another. Same goes for domains, with a little more effort. There may be a point about trying to make an example with a sale, although a fair market can set its own examples.

    People become attached to names and ideas and it can be difficult or demotivating to change them. So sellers can have an extraordinarily strong hand, that perhaps should have been kept in check, with prices often reflecting more than the value of the domain alone.

  27. says

    @required ,

    The example of an oz of gold is not a fair comparison as an oz of gold is an oz of gold with a domain name there is only one meet.me to ever be owned just like one target.com …. yes there are other domains but if you have decided to name and brand your company meet me . Then 450,000 is small price to pay. I find interesting that so many people in this domain space keep trying to find ways to play down this sale that was great for both parties.

    Yes type in direct nav .com names are wonderful. But doesn’t mean that every other brand able domain is like a dollar bottle of beer. In every sale something is worth what someone is willing to pay you for it. It’s when two parties agree , one is the willing seller, two is the willing and able buyer. When that happens that’s what it is worth at the present time.

    Next year meet.me might be worth $1.00 or 100,000,000 but in oct is was worth 450,000 .

  28. Required says

    Works of art are unique too but they’re usually sold at the level of the second highest bid. The particular problem with the domain market is that the top bidder may be willing to pay a multiple of anyone else. Therefore there is no incentive to accept a fair offer (ie. near level of second highest bid). Profits are maximised by waiting for the offers that are a multiple of fair, even if that means leaving a majority of domains unsold.

  29. says

    With works of art if they are sold in a gallery it is the same as this the meet.me sale the seller has an asking price the buyer makes an offer , if they come to terms … Wonderful we established a value for that day on that piece of artwork they buyer and seller had a meeting of the minds. There might not be a second buyer at the time at all… So if te artwork is priced at 450,000 and the only offer is 25,000 then the seller has the right to decide the value to him/her.

    Now if we are talking about a no reserve art or domain auction… Assuming reasonable awareness of the sale.. This can provide a liquid value at the present time.

    But liquid value doesn’t always represent inherent value. If I need cash-flow and decide to sell candy.com on a no-reserve auction and it brings 100,000 to investors. That does no represent the true value to one or several potential end users that may or may not even know that I am selling candy.com …. They are running their buisness’s.

    One good example is 1800-flowers didn’t call me to buy my FallFlowers.com I contacted them. I am sure they had a good use for it and presumably paid me more than if I threw it up on a domainer auction board.

  30. JamesD says

    @ Required – “It shouldn’t be. In a fair and efficient market, if the next best bidder will pay only $25k then that sets the price.

    And so what if you think that a domain may rise in value. I don’t refuse to sell my ounce of gold for $2000 just because I think it may one day be worth $10,000. I can sell it and buy another.”

    This domain wasn’t in an auction – and sellers decide the price, not buyers.

    As for your gold analogy; why would you sell for $2k if you thought it was going to $10k? Your replacement cost would be at least $2k.

  31. Required says

    @NewCars.tv, Liquid value is normally a good guide though. Even if painting seller does try his luck at a higher price, it’s unlikely to be at anywhere near the multiples often sought by domain sellers.

    @JamesD, Given that domains were created for the benefit of those who may wish to develop them, arguably the price should be set by buyers (ie. winning bidder). Rather than allowing sellers to set a price that may capitalise on the name and idea of the buyer in addition to any inherent domain value. Current gold price is only $1615 per oz.

  32. says

    With all respect to you required. It sounds like I would much rather be a buyer of your domain assets than to ever try and sell you any of mine.

    With your thoughts you should take all your domains that you have to day put them on a no reserve Cax.com type platform and in 3-7 days you will have the true value of every name you own.

    Then what?? Try and replace them? There is only one Cars.com in the world one NewCars.com and one NewCars.tv

    What’s NewYork.me worth? Well… I missed the auction where it was sold for under 7k … Offered 10k and got a response that they are looking more in the 400k area … Is it worth 400k to me?? No , but not because it may not worth it to the times or someone else. But because I offered 10k and that may be tne only offer they have received so far … Does not mean it’s only worth 10k… That’s what it was worth to me yesterday.

    If I had a sales team in NewYork and a great platform ready to sell into then NewYork.me could very easily be worth six figures +

  33. Required says

    I agree that care must be taken not to sell too quickly, and to avoid missing buyers who might have been found with more effort. But if a domain has been owned for years then an asking price that is some huge multiple of the best offer to date becomes hard to justify.

    I wouldn’t sell my domains at CAX, but would be happy with any price that would allow purchase of several replacements of similar quality.

  34. says

    Wonderful to see all the comments/remarks and different points of view. Seems to me that domain market is very far apart in terms of valuation. Comps simply do not work in the same way as it does offline to online. Domains seem abstract like valuation of art. In the end the art Curator and evaluator (the expert) is always closest to right.

    One thing I have learned is to follow the expertise of one who finds success more than once or twice by duplicability and seeing results again and again (regardless of domains, hamburger restaurants, or clothing stores). If you do not or have not, chances are you are making statements that are only opinion based. I prefer the opinions of those that have shown proven success and closer to fact.

    One transaction (viewed to be a “high” sale to some) one time can be seen as a fluke or luck. For most sales and price it is simply a mentality issue. Twice or thrice in higher priced sales shows consistency and more than that, I view as what most would consider historic track value or success. It is those that are considered “Experts” in the market, and experts I do not regularly question expert’s opinions vs. my own if I am not of the same caliber. This consistency is a formula that has equated to success and their opinion, inclusive of but not limited to value, time and time again proves expert opinions far beyond most of ours making statements of opinion not fact. These are supported through knowledge, experience and many other factors we do not all possess with consistent higher end sales. These are your experts, these are your market makers.

    To close, I do enjoy opinions for which blogs with forums/ comments section would not exist. It is comments such as “.com is all but dead or dying. Definitely on its way out.” that keep me entertained more than television.

    Of course this is only “opinion” and I am no “expert”! lol

  35. says

    I don’t know man. It seems like a very expensive hedge play to me. “Just in case” .me becomes mainstream with the public like .com. I wonder if someone would pay 6 figures for My.name and brand that as a social network?

    If people pay big money to work hedge funds in the financial market, I guess it might as well be done in the domain industry too.

  36. Jo.King says

    the problem Mike is this

    you or your partners could not say meet.me was sold for a bargain with a straight face

    so domainers on a domain board dont like being bullshitted too

  37. Jo.King says

    and since when is mike or rick or whoever else had to chip in to buy this incredible domain name for a few thousand bucks int eh game of selling at bargain prices

    palease lol

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