Solyndra.com, the domain name once owned by the bankrupt solar panel company Solyndra, expired and went to auction at GoDaddy Auctions. The auction ended this afternoon, and the Solyndra.com domain name sold for $12,225. There were 167 bids from 14 bidders who participated in the auction.
It is unclear how this domain name can or will be used by the winning bidder. Because of the political connections to this domain name, I could see it being used by a political opposition group that uses Solyndra.com for political reasons. There also appear to be thousands of inbound links to the domain name, so someone could use it for traffic or to try and get some SEO value from the domain name.
I will keep an eye on the domain name to see if it was acquired by anyone interesting or to see if it is used in a creative manner.
Because GoDaddy does not report or confirm the results of its auctions, there will not be any sort of confirmation that the winning bidder paid for the domain name. In addition, the sale of Solyndra.com may not be added to any sales reports on NameBio or DNJournal.
I was one of the bidders, but dropped out a day ago.
My guess is that the buyer was either a domainer, or one of the original investment firms that funded this debacle. And if the latter, they likely have ideas for re-launching the brand (i.e., Solyndra 2.0), especially given how quickly the underlying solar cell technology has become (almost) economical to produce/sell/buy.
However, the buyer would be well-advised to also re-file with the USPTO the two TMs that are dead.
Not sure if that brand name has much goodwill. If someone were to launch a similar brand, they may be better off building a new brand name.
I think a lot of people would agree with you, Elliot. But companies have resurrected brands, even very tarnished ones: Look at Arthur Andersen. It’s now called Andersen Global, but I recall seeing the ads/articles a few years ago referencing the original name.
I would think owning the domain could open you up to possible legal issues from the past.
That is a nice chunk of change for a spec buy. Congrats to Godaddy and their shareholders.
This is not that good of a SEO domain. Yes it has thousands of links but one website with thousands of pages who puts a link in the footer could account for a large number of those.
Don’t get me wrong, I would take the name in a heartbeat but I wouldn’t pay anything close to what they did from a pure SEO/Link perspective.
It’s not a great domain. I wonder if it had any significant type-in traffic because of the notoriety, maybe some residual links. I agree with Elliot, it would be better to rebrand in the long-term. For 12K you can get a much better brandable. Solyndra was more than likely a hand-reg.
Honesty alert: it’s a horrible horrible domain. Imagine the nightmare of telling people to go to “solyndra.com” or expecting people to remember it or have a clue what it means. The most I would have done is take it for free for a year.
This goes to show that even mediocre brand-able names can be worth 5 figures….
The first though I have when appraising Solyndra.com is…how many people will mistakenly type in SOLINDRA.com with a “i” instead of “y”. Five seconds later I find out that HugeDomains.com is selling SOLINDRA.com for $2695 BIN.
So 10 seconds latter I would have made a decision not to BID at all on such name.
Obviously somebody else saw more value, or they didn’t do their homework…
I don’t think that the buyer neglected to do their homework on this one.
There are a lot of variables to consider before you bid $12K on Solyndra.com, but I still think that it has very good potential as a resurrected brand – however tarnished it might be.
And that’s mainly because (unlike a dead retail brand, where the macro changes are completely against you trying to reopen with Amazon lurking in the background) solar technology keeps improving every day, and isn’t a technology that has a limited future.