I bought a portfolio of more than 200 premium 2-3 character .ws names (CHiPs) because, well, I like making money :-). As every domain investor knows, the Chinese market is on fire. Not only are they buying up short .com and .CN, but they’re buying up many, many other extensions. I think .ws is next. I shouldn’t say “next”, knowing what I know now. It’s already happening.
The registry (Global Domains International) has been holding back all 2 character names, most 3 character names and most numerics. They ran a test and quietly opened up 4 character names for 48 hours. More than 2000 names were registered in those 2 days – with NO MARKETING! And who do you think registered them? Chinese investors. I’d say that’s tell-tale.
Did you know that Wang Shang translates to “online” or “to be on the internet”. See translations here. If .web and .online are meaningful extensions for us, doesn’t stand to reason that .ws would be meaningful to the Chinese? I’m no expert on the Chinese market but I’m willing to take the gamble.
I spoke to Alan Ezeir, the co-founder of GDI (who is a longtime friend) and he said that they’ve been receiving inquiries for their premium reserved short names – and they initially sold some privately. I saw the writing on the wall and asked if I could acquire some of the names too.
Fast forward a couple months and GDI has an entire Chinese marketing strategy in the works. An auction roll out, press releases, etc. They’re traveling to China for a big local push too.
Some say that the key to successful domaining is about buying right, not selling right. If .ws is going to blow up soon, I didn’t want to be on the sidelines. Now is the time to buy. I’m just trying to get ahead of this market.