Did Jake Winebaum Overpay for the Rights to Business.com?
Anyone who thinks Jake Winebaum overpaid for the rights to Business.com when he bought it Tuesday for $7.5 million is a moron. No, check that, a stupid moron.
Winebaum runs eCompanies, an Internet business incubator. His company bought Business.com from Marc Ostrofsky, a Houston businessman who had paid $150,000 for it three years ago. I know that's a great rate of return. But Winebaum got the best of him.
Yet this morning, in the Los Angeles Times, Naseeem Javed, president of ABC Namebank, a company that helps companies select names, says that Winebaum overpaid. "Tomorrow you could have Pro-Business.com or Businesses.com or Biz.com," he is quoted as saying. "Whoever is buying is playing on very thin ice."Wrong! Had I even known this one was for sale, I would have paid $10 million for it. Still would. Winebaum got a great deal because this site has a lot better ring than VerticalNet (VERT), Commerce One (CMRC) or Ariba (ARBA), the three names I am playing in the Rotisserie League. (I am actually long VerticalNet and Ariba.) He can go to the capital markets right now with that name and a business plan and he will be able to raise several hundred million dollars. What Javed doesn't know, and Ostrofsky may not either, is that B2B is going to stay hot for some time. (And I am not saying that just because Barron's Online said this morning that the group may have peaked -- although that would be fittingly ironic.) Winebaum's move was a stroke of genius. I look forward to drafting his company in the supplemental rounds.
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