Business information directory and search enginame Business.com is for sale, reports the Wall Street Journal, and it may fetch as much as $400 million. Investment bank Credit Suisse is representing the company.
The domain name was purchased for $7.5 million back in 1999. Later, the purchase was widely ridiculed – in 1997 the domain was acquired for just $150,000.
Those were the days before CPC ads and parked pages, though, which brought the value of domains up exponentially. The risk paid off. Business.com now has EBITDA of around $15 million/year. A $400 million acquisition price is a 26 multiple on current profits, which is on the high end of current valuations.
The WSJ reports that Dow Jones & Co. and New York Times are likely bidders. Dow Jones, the parent company of the Wall Street Journal, “declined to comment” to the reporter, who also works for Dow Jones. I love those ethical walls.
Recent Comscore data below. Interesting that it was trending down and then had a huge recent jump.