Going once: Holiday.com, Dubai.net, Arab.com...

The domain name Holiday.com could fetch £20 million (Dh120m) when it is auctioned off at the World Travel Market (WTM) later this year, its owners claim, making it one of the most expensive domain names ever to be sold.

“Holiday.com is expected to break a world record sale price, this is mainly due to holiday being a dominant keyword in the travel industry,” Farad Laaforce, Managing Director of Breathe Luxury, a company that brokers domain names and which is auctioning the domain name, told Emirates 24|7.

It is estimated to sell for upwards of £20m [Dh120m],” he said.

His company is auctioning Holiday.com among a host of other premium domain names, with some targeted directly on this market.

“We will Have Dubai.net on sale this week and that could fetch a big sale over £3m [Dh18m],” he told this website. “In addition, we have had a lot of enquires for Kuwait.com and Doha.com, especially this week,” he adds.

“We have had a lot of interest on Nas.com from people in Arab countries, from Dubai, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and other Middle Eastern countries,” Laaforce maintains.

Promoting it as the “holy grail” of the travel industry, Breathe Luxury says that several major travel companies have strived to acquire the Holiday.com address over the years in order to increase their market share, but its owners were apparently not ready for the sale.

The pre-auction promotional hype goes on to say that the domain was held by an American company for the last 16 years, but has been lying dormant. “However, it is only now that the owners are at ease to part with it,” the firm says.

“We have had offers above seven figures from some of the major travel companies,” Laaforce says. “We see a lot of domain owners either parking their domains or trying to build a site around it. But with the right technology and using social media, we believe Holiday.com can be a leading travel brand for holidaymakers worldwide,” he said in comments to this website.

The company maintains that the keyword ‘Holiday’ is widely searched on major search engines, and that over 90 per cent of online travel businesses are using ‘holiday’ as one of their top 5 keywords search term, to reach customers online.

A Wikipedia list of most expensive domain names maintains that Insurance.com currently holds the title, and was sold for $35.6m (Dh130.75m) in 2010, followed by VacationRentals.com, which sold for $35m (Dh128.55m) in 2007.

Top 5 Most Expensive Domain Names

1. Insurance.com $35.6 million in 2010

2. VacationRentals.com $35 million in 2007 [2]

3. PrivateJet.com $30.1 million in 2012

4. Internet.com $18 million in 2009

5. Insure.com $16 million in 2009

Source: Wikipedia

Among some of the other multi-million-dollar domain names are Hotels.com, which sold for $11m (Dh40.40m) in 2001, Fund.com (£9.99m; Dh59.9m) in 2008, and Fb.com by Facebook for $8.5m (Dh31.2m) in November 2010.

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