In a downturn, cash is king. KillerStartups, a blog that covers killer startups (and any other startup that issues a press release, actually) has acquired the domain Startups.com for “mid six figures” in cash, CEO Gonzalo Arzuaga tells me. So let’s call it $500,000. That is within reason for a primo domain name. After all, Business.com was built into a business that sold for $350 million.
Contrast that against the $17.2 million that Startups.com raised during the dotcom boom before shutting its doors in January, 2002. Back then, Startups.com was a startup incubator, offering office space, HR, and other business services to startups (Guy Kawasaki was on its board). The only asset that survived was its URL.
KillerStartups, which is backed by $250,000 in angel money from South American domain-name entrepreneur Matias de Tezanos, plans to create a network of startup-related business sites around the new domain. The company will rename itself Startups.com Network, but will keep the name KillerStartups for the blog. After plunging to 160,000 unique visitors worldwide in July (their servers melted, it is fixed now), KillerStartups shot back up to a respectable one million uniques in September, according to comScore. (Arzuaga says the site is attracting 1.5 million uniques a month). He says:
We would never kill this concept. It’s a stepping stone to build our network of business-related websites.
Diversifying is always a good idea. Arzuaga adds that the acquisition was funded from cash flow. Sounds like a killer startup in the making.