I’ve heard stories about domain auctions taking quite a bit of time to close post-auction. This is not one of those stories. In fact, the sale of Bouquet.com is quite the opposite of those, and there is a great auction story to go along with it.
In my opinion, Bouquet.com was the best domain name listed for sale at the TRAFFIC Las Vegas auction. The domain name had a high bid of $27,500, and didn’t hit the reserve price. Post-auction, however, the high bidder agreed to pay the $30,000 reserve price, and the domain name was sold.
Bill McClure of Coffee.org was the winning bidder, and he gave me a play-by-play of the auction and how he became the new owner of the domain name:
“I was sitting in the back of the room in Vegas last week at Traffic, glancing down the auction list, “holy smokes”, Bouquet.com, is that a misspelling, look again. I wonder who will know the value. It is a million dollar domain. I sold Eflowers.com for a $1,000,000 to FTD in 2003. I got nervous, I knew I was going to be the buyer. I knew the keyword “Bouquet” was typed in 2.2 million times a month. Our conversion rate will be in the 7% range. WOW. Be cool, don’t look up. I opened the bid at 5,000.00. A phone bidder started bidding. Ammar looked back at me and started bidding. He has a lot more money than me. Ammar quit at 25,000.00 I paid the minimum reserve and instantly added $750,000 to my estate. Have a cocktail.
I talked with the seller and have committed to send a contribution to his favorite charity for every order our site Coffee.org gets in the month of July. It will be in the thousands. Our vision has changed, We will make you smile with every sip and every bouquet. I filed the corporation and trademarks yesterday. We launched the site today.”
Not only was Bouquet.com quickly paid for in full, but Bill’s team already managed to launch a new floral website on the domain name. In less than a week, the domain name went from auction to an operating business.
Bill’s domain names and websites are truly a family affiar. Bouquet.com will be operated by Bill’s daughter Emmie. Bill’s other daughter, Ellie, operates the coffee business. Bill’s son Mark owns and run CommercialInsurance.net, one of the fastest growing agencies nationwide (he writes policies in 40 states). His son Gabe is the behind the scenes guy who actually ensures the websites are all operational.
Congratulations to the entire McClure family!
Thanks to Michael Cyger for sharing the tip!