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Sex.xxx sells for $3m as PussyCash cites SEO value

Kevin Murphy, May 29, 2014, 12:00:49 (UTC), Domain Sales

ICM Registry has sold a package of 40 premium .xxx domain names with a total value of $5 million to Barron Innovations, operator of the PussyCash porn affiliate network.

The headline sale in the batch is sex.xxx, which carried a standalone $3 million price tag.

That’s the first .xxx name to sell for a seven-figure sum. The previous record for a single name was $500,000 for gay.xxx.

It’s also the highest-priced non-.com domain name ever sold, according to publicly available sale prices.

It beats shopping.de, which went for the euro equivalent of $2.85 million in 2008, making sex.xxx the 10th most-expensive domain we know about.

Sex.com is of course the highest priced domain ever sold, going for $13 million in 2010.

According to ICM, Barron bought cam.xxx, phone.xxx and black.xxx for undisclosed six-figure prices. The deal also included web.xxx, market.xxx, mate.xxx and education.xxx, the company said.

Barron is evidently affiliated with webcam-oriented porn sites ImLive.com and Webcamwiz.com, as well as the related lead-generation program PussyCash.com.

PussyCash was subject to this glowing review (NSFW) in the adult industry press recently and is apparently a bit of a big deal in that world.

ICM tells me Barron had been studying the search engine optimization performance of .xxx for some time before signing the deal. Shay Efron, spokesperson for the buyer, said in a press release:

We have studied the undeniably superior performance of .XXX domains in terms of SEO and conversion rates and decided to make a huge splash by acquiring the very best keyword generic names available. We evaluated SEX.xxx, the flagship domain, and decided it has the potential to became the leading brand in the entire adult industry, so it was an obvious part of a very large deal.

The company intends to develop the names, according to a press release.

This is pretty good news for ICM (because of the cash) but it’s also promising for new gTLDs as a whole.

I’m not privy to Barron’s research, but if it’s confident enough in the SEO benefits of .xxx to spend $3 million on one name, that might be a signal that other niche gTLDs could see the same benefits in future.

It might not happen overnight — ICM launched .xxx two and a half years ago — but premium names could appreciate in value, assuming new registries manage to get some actual users building sites.

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Comments (8)

  1. Domainer says:

    $3mm for .XXX – really? Is it just PR bullshit or for real?

  2. JZ says:

    Good news for the registry but you never…NEVER hear about any good sales of .xxx from registrants.

  3. sexy says:

    sex is a non adult term by google… therefore there is NO SEO value here. if sex.xxx is worth $3m, than porn.xxx is worth $10m .. its that simple

    • Kevin Murphy says:

      Presumably there’s SEO value because people type in “sex xxx” or “xxx sex” into Google in order to filter out the non-porn stuff you get for “sex” alone?

  4. Stuart Lawley says:

    @ Domainer- Sale is real- Buyer is major well known adult company. Everyone of our premium deals has been at the prices stated.

    @JZ- in fact this deal included a resale name from another adult industry end user who had previously purchased gaysex.xxx, we brokered the deal at a profit for the original purchaser who then reinvested the whole proceeds in buying 6 more names from our premium list sincity.xxx
    moms.xxx
    b2b.xxx
    coupons.xxx
    twink.xxx
    hotass.xxx

    Truth is the adult industry do not tend to buy names from houses like Afternic and Sedo. We employ full time senior salespeople who attend each and every trade show worldwide (that we also sponsor many of) and they engage in direct face to face selling of these names, sometimes over many months. “A rising tide raises all ships” i think is the phrase commonly used

    @ sexy- porn.xxx was sold by us to the owner of porn.com more than 12 months ago for an undisclosed price. We have always believed that sex.xxx and porn.xxx were our most valuable names. Remember these providers under their existing networks get over 10 million visitors a day, so one would presume they know a thing or two about SEO.

    • JZ says:

      So in other words, domainers shouldn’t waste their time trying to sell .xxx domains?

      Also, can you clarify what connection Barron Innovations has with ICM? This statement about them makes it sound as if they have some kind of partnership with you to promote premium .xxx domains

      “Barron Innovations was established in order to promote premium .XXX domains and turn them into top adult industry brands.”

  5. Tom G says:

    .NYC will dominate mobile google search results in less than three years.

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