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Go Daddy flogs 50 MILLION domains

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Go Daddy's installed base of domain name registrations has swollen to 50 million, dwarfing all of its closest competitors.

The 50 millionth name, dbakit.com, was registered by Indian punter Kranthi Kumar Kukkala over the weekend, according to the company.

Go Daddy's closest competitor is eNom, owned by publicly traded Demand Media, which recently reported that it had 11.9 million domains under management at the end of June.

The entire universe of internet domains amounted to 215 million names at the end of the second quarter, according to research published by VeriSign in August.

Go Daddy says that it registers, renews or transfers a domain name every second. Close to half of all new registrations pass through its store.

Since January 2010, Go Daddy has grown by 10 million domains, while the entire domain market has grown by 23 million, according to VeriSign numbers.

According to Domain Name Wire, when expired and transferred addresses are taken into account, Go Daddy has processed 225 million years worth of domain registrations since it started business over a decade ago.

The privately held company recently struck a deal, reportedly worth more than $2bn, to sell more than half of its shares to a group of private investors including KKR, Silver Lake and Technology Crossover Ventures.

The deal made former CEO and founder Bob Parsons a billionaire – he's ranked at number 293 on the Forbes 400 list of the richest Americans, tied with founders of Groupon and LinkedIn.

The deal also kick-started a wave of consolidation in the domain marketplace. Industry granddaddy Network Solutions was picked up by smaller rival Web.com for $561m last month and last week British stalwart Group NBT was take private in a £153m deal.

With ICANN set to massively liberalise the top-level domain market next year, many observers believe registrars are among the best-positioned to capitalise on the likely growth of the industry. ®

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