Domain-name market takes shape, auction to begin in Sept.
VietNamNet Bridge – More than 500,000 domain names had been registered as of June, according to the Vietnam Internet Network Information Center (VNNIC), but only 280,000 had been activated.
From early September 2014, the trade and auction of domain names will be recognized as legal under the Prime Minister’s Decision No 38.
The unregistered domain names, expired domain names and the telecom number repository all will be put into trade and auction under the management by the Ministry of Information and Communication.
Applauding the decision, Le Hai Binh, chair of Mat Bao Company, said it was necessary to create clear regulations to create a legal market for domain name traders. Until the decision was released, traders had felt insecure because their transactions were not protected by laws.
Binh said that the green light turned on by government will help make the trade activities more active, and that a series of domain name trading floors will be set up soon.
In the third quarter of 2013, a club of domain name investors was set up. The 20 members of the club all hold large numbers of domain names.
At the end of 2013, iNet, a company specializing in providing domain name services, organized an event “Gala Domainer” aiming to gather domain name investors.
Hoang Ngoc Duy, director of Mat Bao Media Company, said many domain name investors would turn up before the public in the time to come instead of “doing business in silence”.
He went on to say that domain name investors need to gather at large official trading floors which not only serve as places for buyers and sellers to meet, but also offer the responsibility of protecting and giving consultancy to clients.
PA Vietnam, an experienced domain name registration firm, earlier this year decided to set up a domain name trading floor called bid.pavietnam.vn.
A representative of PA Vietnam said that once the domain name market develops, it would make a great contribution to the development of the e-commerce market. If there is no legal framework for the domain name trade, e-commerce firms would meet major difficulties in domain name transfer.
According to VNNIC, 75,000 Vietnamese businesses had registered 200,000 domain names by early 2014, including Vietnamese and international domain names. In general, one business had registered more than one domain name.
If noting that there are 500,000 operational businesses, one would see that only 13 percent of businesses have their domain names or websites.
More than 500,000 domain names have been registered by June 2014, but 220,000 domain names have not been put into use. This makes analysts believe that the 220,000 domain names were registered for speculation purposes.
Trading domain names is thought to be a profitable business. An investor said he can see great opportunities of making profit with Vietnamese domain names (.vn or .com.vn) because of the low registration fees, just tens of thousands of dong, or hundreds of thousands of dong. Meanwhile, the selling prices could be tens or hundreds of times higher.