Company Sells .Tickets Domain Name to Every Pro League in U.S.
10 Feb, 2016By: Tracey Schelmetic
Want to be marketable to those who want sports tickets? You need a domain that says you sell them.
In February of last year, London-based Accent Media was granted something extremely valuable by ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. That valuable something is exclusive ownership of the .tickets top-level domain (TLD), a feat that was purportedly accomplished in the course of a private auction. What this means is that Accent Media is now in a position to begin selling Web addresses that end in .tickets. The reaction across the sports and entertainment world has been robust and immediate.
For its part, Accent Media is likely to make a lot of money. The group began actively selling the .tickets domain names in September, and since then has sold the Web addresses to every team MLB, NFL and NBA, and well as many in NHL.
While there have been sales to entities outside the world of sports – notably, Lufthansa, Silicon Valley tech giants including Amazon and Google, several FORMULA 1 brands, singer Beyoncé and the band U2 – the reaction from U.S. sports business has overwhelmed most other industries.
Accent Media notes that while several European teams have purchased the .tickets domain name – Manchester United and Real Madrid are two of them -- the response in the U.S. is indicative of “U.S. sporting bodies' unrivalled organization when it comes to rights protection and marketing.”
“We admire the American attitude towards rights-protection and control of their economic interests, and we are very pleased that our proposition has been endorsed by what is a priority sector for us,” said Steve Machin, Co-CEO of Accent Media, in a press release.
There’s also likely to be benefits to fans wary of being lured into ticket sales with shady organizations. Since only authorized Web sites are able to acquire the .tickets domain names (in theory), fans who buy off these sites know they’re not getting roped into a bad deal with a third-party organization.
For Accent Media, the control professional sports leagues in the United States exercise over ticket and merchandise sales has been something of a godsend.
“The relentless professionalism of U.S. sports as a commercial sector is impressively shown by the zeal with which they have become early adopters of ‘.tickets’ domains,” noted Gary Fisher, Accent’s other co-CEO.
Accent Media has secured a number of investors in the last few years, most notably a substantial investment by AIM-listed CentralNIC (CNIC). The company has its eye on more than sports. Back in September, Accent Media signed a deal with the Shubert Organization, the largest theater operator on Broadway, to launch a “broadway.tickets” Web site.