I went to sign a purchase agreement using a Montblanc pen I received as a gift. Midway through signing my first set of initials, the pen died. I unscrewed the pen to see what type of ink refill I needed to purchased, and conveniently, the ink type and website domain name were clearly listed on the ink cartridge: MontblancRefills.com.
I visited MontblancRefills.com, and the page did not load. A look at the url bar showed the domain name had redirected to another website. It appears I landed on a zero click landing page. I quickly re-checked to make sure I didn’t typo the domain name, and I had not.
Out of curiosity, I did a Whois check to see what was going on, and I see the domain name is registered under privacy at Above.com. I did a historical Whois search to see if the domain name had been owned by Montblanc at any point in time.
Historical Whois records at DomainTools show the MontblancRefills.com domain name was once owned by Richemont International LTD. Richemont is a luxury holding company that owns the Montblanc brand. From what I can tell, the domain name expired some time in late 2016 and was then deleted. Shortly after it was deleted, the domain name was re-registered and now has a creation date of November 25, 2016.
It’s peculiar that Richemont / Montblanc brand managers let this domain name expire considering there are ink cartridges with this url on them. For what it’s worth, newer Montblanc pens have cartridges with the Montblanc.com url on them. I think it is poor domain name management. If a company uses a domain name on its products, the company should renew the domain name until it is certain there are no more products in existence with the domain name on it.