Alibaba reportedly looking to spin off “Go Daddy of China” in an IPO valuing the popular Chinese domain registrar at $500 million.
Alibaba is a Chinese Internet holding company with a number of popular websites and companies. Included amongst these companies is a popular Chinese domain registrar and hosting company, HiChina.
Business Insider is reporting today that Alibaba plans to spin off HiChina for an initial public offering (IPO) in a US stock market. Fox Business is reporting that the IPO would value the domain registrar at $500 million. This would be a great ROI considering Alibaba reportedly bought an 85% stake in the company for $79 million back in 2009.
Prior to reading this news, I hadn’t heard about HiChina before, but the company looks fairly large. According to Business Insider, “has over 2.5 million registered users and more than 2 million domain names. It operates at least 1.7 million enterprise mail accounts and more than 2 million company sites and application. In addition, about 50,000 sites are using HiChina’s web construction service.”
There aren’t too many publicly traded domain registrars. Off the top of my head, I can think of Tucows, Web.com (Register.com and Network Solutions pending approval) and Enom if you count them as a part of Demand Media. GoDaddy flirted with going public, but ultimately decided against it.