Without a doubt the .me launch, from a purely economic point of view, has been a huge success.
I added all the winning bid prices from the closed auctions and add all the current high bids on the active auctions and came up to a total of around $2 million.
$2 Million dollars for the registry, not including its profit on the 50,000 or so .me domains that were registered in the first days (the last report on the number of registrations I have seen).
At $19.95 per year, retail, this extension obviously has a much greater profit margin than selling .com’s do.
The $2 Million number also does not include any of the thousands of “premium”, .Me domains that the registry held back and will auction off at a later date.
I expect to see some of the first of these reserved domains be auctioned off at TRAFFIC New York by Moniker.com
So when ICANN talks about a $200K application fee for the new Tld’s, it seems like chump change that can be made back by the auctioning off of just a few domains.
With huge upside potential and limited downside risk, I expect to see hundreds of application for these new Tld’s and would not be shocked to see some of the most desirable of these new extension to be auctioned off for well into the 7 figures and possibly 8 figures.