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Solar energy is a hot topic these days, and I recall I actually worked on it long time ago. One year my high school launched a science campaign, so several friends and I applied and received a small fund which we used to buy metal sheets and other parts, hoping we could build a device to make good use of solar energy. The project died almost immediately when we started. The cause was lack of motivation and enthusiasm. The lesson is: you must do what you really enjoy. Here's the post.

September 30, 2016 (Fri)

Learning from Chinese domain investor Tong Wang


Tong WANG (王通) bought his first domain name in 2001 to develop a website for personal use. In 2002, he found out marketing expert YE Mao Zhong was using Yemaozhong.net but the .com name was still available. Wang registered Yemaozhong.com and gave it to Ye for free. In return Ye sent him a set of 9 autographed books.

Even though Yemaozhong.com did not make him any money, Wang was happy for what he had done, because after he read the books he got the idea of marrying internet with marketing, and became the first man to offer internet marketing services in China. That idea brought him much success.

In 2005, he spent $600 to buy 9959.com for a planned project but it did not materialize. He kept the domain name and now it's worth over $150k, giving him a return of more than 200 times on his investment for doing nothing. Wang surrounds himself with great investors, learns from them, and has made a lot of money thanks to some suggestions he received from these great investors.

For a while, he was helping some clients to acquire domain names. This service greatly benefited his clients. For example, domain name KX.cn acquired by his client Kai Xin (used car marketplace) for $45k is estimated to be worth more than 750k now. But, this work also led him to the discovery of domain marketplaces on eName, 22.cn, and 4.cn. As a result, he spent some 5 to 6 figures to acquire 500 domain names from these marketplaces. Within two years, the value of this portfolio increased by more than 200 times. Later, he sold off the following six domain names and they covered the acquisition costs of the entire portfolio: Paiji.com, DMXY.com, 111151.com, 1999999.com, 888139.com, and 33263.com.

He also gave a domain name to a startup in exchange for 1% of their equity. The startup is now worth more than $150m. Wang still owns about 1,000 domain names, which he estimates are worth more than several million dollars. When acquiring domain names, he always focuses on their business applications.

This story is based on an article published on Admin5, which can be found in Chinese at http://www.admin5.com/article/20160907/684862.shtml