German Domain Names Are in .de-mand

Sales of pre-owned domain names ending in the German extension -- .de -- were up 43% in 2008, according to a study on the secondary domain market released Wednesday by Sedo, an online marketplace for domain names and Web sites.

More than 6,100 .de domain names were sold in 2008 for total revenue of US$10.6 million. This compares to 5,000 .de domain names changing hands in 2007, bringing in total sales of $7.4 million.

Indeed, the most expensive domain name that sold in 2008 was German. Kredit.de -- the German word for credit -- which sold for more than $1.1 million.

German domain name sales outpaced those of other leading European countries by a wide margin.

Names ending in the .uk extension for the United Kingdom racked up $4.2 million in sales, while names ending in the European Union extension .eu topped $1.6 million.

Among the country codes, France came in third, with $1.2 million worth of .fr names sold in 2008. Spain came in fourth, with $1 million worth of .es names changing hands, and Austria came in a distant fifth with $550,000 worth of .at names being sold.

While sales of .de names grew the most in 2008, they were still overshadowed by sales of .com names. Sedo reports that more than 17,000 .com names were sold in 2008 for total revenue of $44 million. This compares with more than 12,000 .com names sold in 2007 for $62 million in sales.

Although the highest selling domain in 2008 was Kredit.de, the nine other best sellers were .com names. One of these -- invest.com -- surpassed $1 million. The other eight ranged in price from $260,000 to $650,000.

Overall, the secondary domain name market topped $77 million in 2008, up 8% from $72 million in 2007, Sedo reports.

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