According to an article in The Irish Times this morning, Tourism Ireland acquired the Ireland.com domain name from The Irish Times. Business and Leadership pegged the value of the deal at €490,000*. At today’s exchange rate, that equals approximately $635,579 (*see update below).
The registrant of Ireland.com is still listed as The Irish Times, as it has been for a number of years, dating back to at least 2001. Although I am not sure if the website was included in the transaction, the Irish Times article stated that Tourism Ireland has “plans to unveil a new website for the tourism industry later this year.”
Tourism Ireland currently operates a website on TourismIreland.com. The tagline of the website is “marketing the island of Ireland overseas,” so it’s appropriate to operate on the exact match .com. The Ireland.ie ccTLD is owned by Fáilte Ireland, the National Tourism Development Authority. They forward the domain name to DiscoverIreland.ie.
The sale of Ireland.com ranks as one of the ten highest reported public geodomain sales. There are a number of private geodomain sales that likely have eclipsed this amount, including the seven figure sale of Denver.com, earlier this year.
Top 10 reported geodomain sales:
- Korea.com – $5,000,000
- England.com – $2,000,000
- Branson.com – $1,600,000
- Russia.com – $1,500,000
- Britain.com – $1,000,000
- Singapore.com – $800,000
- Melbourne.com – $700,000
- Ireland.com -
- Macau.com – $550,000
- Jerusalem.com – $500,000
Update: The Irish Times posted an update on its website saying the deal was valued at €495,000, or approximately $642,065.