According to recent statistics, Noah is the second most popular boy’s name of 2020, but it seems the name is also a popular brand name. With 56 company names on Crunchbase containing “Noah,” there’s a lot of competition for domain names.
In May 2021, TLDInvestors.com revealed that both Noah.com and Noah.io were recently acquired by Noah Savings (UK) Ltd., a crypto banking company that is currently in stealth mode.
The acquisition price of Noah.com wasn’t revealed, but similar domain names have traded in the mid-six-figure range. James.com, for example, sold for $440,000.
Noah’s acquisition of Noah.com means that for the duration of its ownership of the domain, crypto banking startup Noah dominates the digital identity and branding for the term Noah. That will come as a blow to at least one company named Noah.
Another Noah was founded in 2016 using the Noah.co domain. This Noah has had a successful start. Since launching, the company has raised $156.1 million in funding, has been featured in the likes of Forbes, and has won a couple of awards. Its innovative business model allows home buyers to access home equity by offering upfront financing in exchange for a share in the home’s future appreciation or depreciation.
While the majority of Noah’s $156.1 million in funding rightly goes towards its financing business model as well as building its team and the other costs involved with home financing. Should the company have used what’s likely to have been less than 1% of its funding to secure Noah.com?
As a company that offers financing for home purchases, staff at companies such as Noah will likely be privy to financial documents and sensitive information sent from its customers. With .COM as the dominant domain extension throughout the U.S., we’ve seen general consumer confusion between .COM and .CO in the past, most prevalently with Overstock’s usage of O.co, which reportedly attributed to a 61% loss in traffic to the unused O.com.
Could emails also go awry, with emails being sent to a .COM address rather than a .CO? Possible minor email loss alone may not have been a big consideration for Noah, who no doubt at least thought about acquiring Noah.com at some stage. However, other companies have made sizable domain purchases to plug potential security problems. Microsoft acquired Corp.com to avoid a potential disaster, for example.
Home financing company Noah certainly had the opportunity to acquire Noah.com, but now face some real brand dilution, email and traffic loss, and customer confusion as they compete with another financial company actively using Noah.com.