The Challenge of SEC Searching

6

George Kirikos is the best at sleuthing out domain name sales from SEC filings. While some domain name sales may look easy to spot because they are fairly obvious when you know where and when to look, it can be difficult to connect dots and confirm a domain name acquisition. Sometimes it is impossible to pin down a domain name sale even when it is mentioned clearly in a SEC filing.

Case in point, I see that Fastly referenced a $39,000 domain name carrying cost in this month’s Quarterly Report filing. In order to see when the domain name was acquired, I searched for all Fastly Quarterly Report filings that mention “domain name.” The August 2019 Quarterly Report had the first mention of its domain name acquisition:

During the three and six months ended June 30, 2019, we purchased additional internet protocol addresses and domain names for a gross carrying value of $0.6 million and $38.8 thousand, respectively,

The report is a bit conflicting, as the qualitative section says “domain names” but the financial reporting lists the singular “Domain Name.” On the other hand, the financial reporting section lists the plural “Internet protocol addresses.” It is unclear if the company bought one or more domain names.

Without knowing much about the company and starting with its Fastly.com domain name, I used the DomainTools Whois History tool. Fastly.com is registered to DNStinations, the Whois privacy service at MarkMonitor. The domain name has been registered to DNStinations for nearly ten years. Archive.org shows Fastly.com has been used by the company for many years. Clearly, Fastly.com is not the domain name that was acquired for $38,800.

Because Fastly.com is registered under the DNStinations privacy, I am unable to use DomainIQ to find other domain names registered to the company. If I was familiar with Fastly and/or happened to know some of the domain names the company uses in its marketing materials, I might be able to figure out which domain name was acquired for nearly $39k. I am not, and there’s no real incentive to spend more time digging.

A $38,800 domain name acquisition is noteworthy but not notable. As such, it’s not worth spending much more time trying to determine which domain name Fastly acquired.

The point of this article is to show the amount of work that goes into uncovering domain name sales via SEC reporting. I spent about 30 minutes trying to connect some dots here but came up empty. There are many filings similar to this one. The people who do this particularly well – including George Kirikos and Jamie Zoch – spend considerable time on research. I don’t think everyone understands the sometimes thankless effort that goes into uncovering domain name sales.

About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

6 COMMENTS

    • I’ve made dozens of IR calls and sent many more emails and can’t recall a time when a company provided additional information than what was in the report. There have been times where a company confirmed something I found, but none have ever provided additional commentary that was not in the report.

    • I’ve made dozens of IR calls and sent many more emails and can’t recall a time when a company provided additional information than what was in the report. There have been times where a company confirmed something I found, but none have ever provided additional commentary that was not in the report.

Leave a Reply