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For Dot-Coms, What's in a Name Is Becoming Increasingly Lucrative is sitting on a hot property. Plus: more moolah for ePinions, plus a kiss from Goldman.

The twentysomething-year-old Israeli founders of

, a yet-to-be-launched "contact-management" Web site based in Redwood Shores, Calif., recently paid about $400,000 for that killer domain name. That sounded like a lot of money just a few months ago. But the young company was spending money from its venture capitalists, including

Accel Partners

in Silicon Valley, and in light of the $7.5 million incubator


has paid for the name, perhaps the Israelis got a bargain.

So when I first became familiar with


, a Santa Barbara, Calif., company that's been around since 1993, and makes messaging software for Internet applications, I had one thought: They don't need that name.

After all, companies that are focused on


kinds of software likely would be more than willing to fork over at least $7.5 million for such a moniker.


(ORCL) - Get Report

, for example, could make hay with the name Newly public


, while exploiting an admired brand name in consumer software, really wants to be so much more than an antivirus company. And, of course,

(BYND) - Get Report

-- once

-- would be much better off with, methinks. CEO John MacFarlane begs to differ.

"The name is actually quite appropriate," he asserts, pointing out that had its name long before most of us knew how to say "dot-com." He says just answering the phone at the company was a challenge in the early days because callers had trouble processing the name. The name is golden today of course, though probably not the reason's shares have rocketed from below 20 after its midsummer initial public offering to 108 1/4 Friday. The success has come from counting many of the top telecommunications companies as its customers.

SiliconStreet: Join the discussion on


message boards.

Still, MacFarlane says that folks call "from time to time" to inquire about the name. in particular wanted the name before abandoning, but wasn't interested in selling.

Everyone -- and every company -- has its price, of course. Apparently's price just isn't $7.5 million.

And Briefly, on the VC Front


, the Mountain View, Calif., company that enjoyed a fawning, full-bore article about itself in

The New York Times Magazine

before it had a product, will announce today something even better than good publicity: It's raised more money and recruited a major investment banker to its board.

According to ePinions, Brad Koenig, who heads the

Goldman Sachs

TheStreet Recommends

technology banking group in Menlo Park, Calif., is becoming a director. Not surprisingly, Goldman Sachs is becoming an investor as well. Goldman, together with


(DELL) - Get Report


Bowman Capital

(a pre-IPO backer of


) and previous investors

Benchmark Capital


August Capital

, is investing a total of $25 million. The company raised $8 million earlier in the year.

The ePinions press release even has a comment from Goldman Internet analyst Michael Parekh, who normally passes judgment on public companies. Is there any doubt who will take this company public?

ePinions sports a cool concept: totally unbiased opinions from experts and users on consumer items from autos and home appliances to ski resorts and cell phones. It also rates banks and online brokerages, but not traditional investment banks or venture-capital firms (admittedly not consumer services). Still, an unbiased view of those industries at ePinions would be a viewpoint worth reading.

Also from VC land, Accel Partners will ballyhoo today the closing of its latest Internet fund and some of its high-profile investors: Dell,


(MSFT) - Get Report


Nortel Networks






Sun Microsystems

(SUNW) - Get Report



(DIS) - Get Report

. Top executives from another slew of leading Internet companies also have invested in the fund.

For those unclear on how this all works, follow the money-generation recipe: VC firm invests in startups and makes a killing, sometimes taking them public, sometimes selling them to big corporations; VC firm raises additional money and takes in big corporate partners and successful entrepreneurs as investors, promising to make them more money; VC firm makes a killing for its investors (the big corporations and prominent executives) by taking the start-ups public or selling them to big corporations and then makes investments in new startups founded by, guess who, executives from big corporations and previously successful entrepreneurs; repeat.

Isn't this

fin de siecle

stuff grand?

Check out part two of today's column: a review of the Credit Suisse First Boston technology conference.

Adam Lashinsky's column appears Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. In keeping with TSC's editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, although he owns stock in He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. Lashinsky writes a column for Fortune called the Wired Investor, and is a frequent commentator on public radio's Marketplace program. He welcomes your feedback at

Edie Yates assisted with the reporting of this column.