Not only is Face.com a fantastic domain name, but it’s become “a technology company with the best-in-class face recognition software.” TechCrunch is reporting that there are “rumors that it is being acquired by Facebook for up to $100 million,” although the CEO didn’t confirm (or deny) the rumor.
I do not know much about company that owns Face.com (Vizi Labs), but it’s interesting to see one of the Whois contacts is “John Berryhill Attorney Trust Account,” so perhaps there are domain industry connections there. In any event, there are at least two domain industry connections associated with Face.com.
According to Nat Cohen’s blog, domain investor Andy Booth once acquired Face.com for $160,000:
“Securing Face.com was a big deal. It was not easy to acquire, but I saw a listing on Afternic, where it had a $130,000 bid on it. I contacted the owner and established that he was looking to sell it, but wanted the market to dictate its value. After numerous calls, I convinced him to accept my $160,000 offer, and we got the deal wrapped up. I felt that given the general domain market, this kind of money was more than value for such a premium, generic domain and later DNF appraisals and the resultant sale would affirm this belief.“
It looks like Andy owned the domain name sometime around August 15, 2007, and it appears to have been subsequently re-sold to a company called Vevron shortly thereafter. I reached out to a representative from Vevron (someone with many domain industry ties), and they confirmed that the company sold the domain name to its current owners, but details are covered by a non disclosure agreement.
It’s interesting to follow the history of a fantastic domain name like Face.com and see it grow into a big business.