What country are you based in?
I recently returned to the Netherlands after spending 14 years in Hong Kong.
Do you feel your location has an effect on your domain investing?
Absolutely. Depending on where you live in the world there is a timezone difference that will impact your ability to compete in auctions, there’s a trust factor (some countries are considered “bad”), and then there’s taxes and access to payment processors and tools.
How long have you been involved in domains?
Are you a full time domainer?
I am full-time in the domain name industry as I divide my time between building Efty and managing my own investment portfolio.
How did you find out about domain investing?
I co-founded an employment website for the Greater China region in 2006. That company didn’t make it and was shut down four years later. The domain, which was administered by a web development company, was neglected and ultimately expired from Network Solutions. I wanted to relaunch the site so I did some research to find out how to gain ownership of the domain again once it would drop. This led me to NameJet where all the expired inventory from NetSol is being auctioned. At NameJet I learned about the domain name aftermarket, drops and auctions which got my started with building my portfolio.
What's your favourite non .com tld/nTLD/gTLD?
What's the best advice you've been given by another domain investor, either directly or through something they've said on twitter or in an interview?
I really accelerated my sales and increased my sales trough rate once I connected with Nikul Sanghvi at the last NamesCon in Vegas and started to diversify my portfolio into alternative extensions through a data-driven approach. I pretty much was a .com maxi before that but learned that there are new opportunities for domain name investors all the time if you closely follow the trends and study the data.
What kind of goals do you set yourself?
Take at least one nap a day.
Who are your top 3 domain investors?
I think it’s important to find inspiration and support from investors that are on a similar wavelength as yourself as they face the same challenges as you and for that reason, their advice is often much more valuable than someone who build their portfolio in the nineties or early 2000s. For me, those investors are Joshua Schoen, Nikul Sanghvi, and Josh Reason.
What's the toughest part of domain investing?
You gotta spend money to make money and the road toward a revenue-generating portfolio can be long with many pitfalls and costly mistakes along the way.
How do you structure the domaining part of your day?
I have two set moments during the day in which I check auctions and or drops. The first few years I spend a lot more time as I was deeply immersed in learning everything about the industry possible.
What's the most you've ever spent on one domain?
$11,000 or so.
Have you ever done outbound? If so, were/are you successful?
Yes, I found a little success but not worth my time. I started my career in sales and business development but now I prefer to have most of my domain names priced, offer lease-to-own and hardly ever enter into any negotiations myself.
You're given $10k to spend on domains, how do you spend it?
I’d try and pick up 2 or 3 short and brandable one-worders in .io
Outside of domains, what other business/wealth/personal growth figures do you look up to?
No one in particular but I respect people who put their health and family first but still build significant wealth for themselves and others around them.
What do you do when you're not domaining?
I run a lot, love to hang out with my six-year-old daughter, and recently we moved into our new home which has a garden I find myself working in often.
What advice would you give to people just starting out in domains?
Read the blogs, study the data, get on Twitter, attend NamesCon and most of all, watch and/or read every piece of content Michael Cyger has published over the years.