Let me start by saying that this isn’t listed by Meredith as a pure domain name sale, so it wouldn’t be eligible to rank on any domain sales charts.
Founded in 1972, Money is a personal finance brand that thrived under the ownership of Time Inc. The brand smartly acquired Money.com in the early Internet era, but it took until 2014 for a dedicated Money.com website to be established.
Naturally, with an asset like Money.com, the website soon proved to be a hit, growing its traffic steadily over the course of the past six years, with the domain and overall Money brand both included in the $2.8 billion acquisition of Time Inc by Meredith in 2018. Unfortunately, though, this wasn’t deemed a key title and Meredith seemed keen to sell the Money brand, following Time, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated out of Meredith’s door.
After ditching the production of the physical Money magazine (and the 400,000+ subscribers) in summer 2019, Meredith subsequently sold the Money.com brand separately.
According to an SEC filing (page 13) from Meredith, the company sold the Money.com domain, website, and associated assets for a total of $24.9 million in October 2019. While FolioMag states that Meredith wasn’t actively selling the brand at the time, they received an inbound offer that was inline with their own valuation of Money.
WHOIS data shows that the Money.com domain eventually moved out of Meredith’s possession and into a privacy-protected NameCheap account around November 20th, 2019.Meredith sold the @Money brand (including Money.com) for $24.9 million.Click To Tweet
The brand was acquired by Ad Practitioners LLC, a startup founded by two ex-employees of Google and Moz respectively, that owns a portfolio of digital brands including the popular ConsumersAdvocate.org.
While the $24.9 million acquisition of the Money brand included the website, content, traffic, social media accounts, and more, the lure of the Money.com domain name will likely have played a significant role in Ad Practitioners LLC’s valuation of the brand.
How much of the $24.9 million can be attributed to the Money.com domain itself? It’s very difficult to say, but this was a significant price to pay to gain control of one of the best financial domains out there.
An Ad Practitioners representative would not confirm the acquisition price, but the information in Meredith’s SEC filing should suffice as evidence that the Money.com brand sold for $24.9 million.