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Donuts to pay $213 million for Rightside

Kevin Murphy, June 14, 2017, 12:39:00 (UTC), Domain Registries

Donuts is to acquire Rightside for $213 million, the companies have just announced.

The $10.60 per share cash offer represents a 12% premium over Rightside’s average closing share price over the last 30 days. Rightside’s 52-week high is over $12.

Just one year ago, Donuts offered $70 million for Rightside’s portfolio of gTLDs, but was shot down.

Rightside also turned down a $5 million offer for four gTLDs from XYZ.com in April 2016.

The $213 million offer is funded at least partly by Silicon Valley Bank, which is providing a credit facility to Donuts.

Assuming the deal closes — which will require the holders of more than half its shares to agree to the price — it will make Rightside a private company once more, as a wholly owned Donuts subsidiary.

The two gTLD registries are already partners, with Rightside providing domain registry services for Donuts’ roughly 200 new gTLDs.

There was talk of a split last year, with Donuts apparent endorsement of Google’s Nomulus platform, but the two companies reaffirmed their relationship earlier this year.

Rightside itself has a portfolio of 40 gTLDs, but it’s faced criticism from shareholders over the last year or so over their relatively poor performance.

Activist investor J Carlo Cannell, who owns almost 9% of Rightside, has been pressuring the company’s board to take radical action for the last 15 months.

Earlier this year, Rightside got out of the once-core wholesale registrar game by selling eNom to rival Tucows for $83.5 million.

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Comments (11)

  1. Richard Funden says:

    Wow. First Enom to Tucows, now Rightside to Donuts…
    So what is left now?

  2. Francois says:

    Worst news ever for domaining!

  3. Seems that Donuts will not use Nomulus in the end.

    • Rubens Kuhl says:

      Whether or not they will maintain their own platform or switch to Nomulus is still a decision they can make…

  4. nik says:

    This is start of Strong base for nGTLD’s future.
    Now For sure Donuts is future takeover target by Verisign or Godaddy. Its too big to ignore now.

  5. nik says:

    just watch, Very soon Uniregistry and .xyz will join Donuts.

  6. Rolf says:

    Sold for scraps. Guess the top line revenue agenda never worked out.

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