The Connect.com domain name has changed hands, and the buyer is HubSpot, a marketing and CRM service provider. HubSpot is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange with a $22+ billion market capitalization. Connect.com transferred to MarkMonitor, and it currently has a MarkMonitor default landing page.
Prior to the sale, Connect.com had been registered under Whois privacy for many years. The domain name previously resolved to a BrandForce landing page powered by Efty. The domain name is still listed for sale via Afternic, and I can see the asking price had been $11.8 million.
I reached out to HubSpot CTO and Co-Founder Dharmesh Shah to see if he could comment about the acquisition. Dharmesh is no stranger to domain name acquisitions, as he recently acquired WordPlay.com for $100,000. Dharmesh offered no comment on the acquisition.
Louis Pickthall, Co-Founder and Vice President of BrandForce, confirmed the sale of Connect.com. He told me the domain name was brokered internally at BrandForce by himself and Stephen Byrne.
Connect.com is one of the best domain names I have seen change hands in quite some time. Because HubSpot is a publicly traded company, perhaps it will report the acquisition price in a future SEC filing. In the shorter term, I am looking forward to seeing how the company uses this exceptional domain name.