We analyzed 473 unicorn companies to understand their domain name preferences. These unicorns are from 29 different countries and 16 industries.
We looked deeply into their domain names to gain insight about what extensions are used most, how many of these unicorns own the exact match .com domain name, if any of these companies purchased its domain name after being valued over $1 billion, and more.
We found some interesting things.
The Global Unicorn Club
As you know, a unicorn is a privately held startup company valued at over $1 billion.
We used CB Insights’s “The Global Unicorn Club” data in this analysis. There are a total of 473 companies in the list and the total cumulative valuation is $1.4 trillion.
There are 227 companies from the US and 120 companies from China. The other countries with more than 10 companies in the list are the United Kingdom (23), India (21), Germany (13), and South Korea (10).
|COUNTRY||NUMBER OF COMPANIES|
|United Arab Emirates||1|
The unicorn companies were categorized under 16 industries. Fintech and Internet Software & Services are the top industries with 61 companies. They are followed by E-commerce & Direct-to-Consumer (55), Artificial Intelligence (47), and Health (34).
|INDUSTRY||NUMBER OF COMPANIES|
|Internet Software & Services||61|
|E-Commerce & Direct-to-Consumer||55|
|Mobile & Telecommunications||29|
|Auto & Transportation||28|
|Supply Chain, Logistics, & Delivery||26|
|Data Management & Analytics||20|
|Consumer & Retail||17|
According to CB Insights, more than 50% of the companies joined the unicorn club in the last two years.
Exact Brand Match (EBM) .COM Domain Names
The first thing we look at is what percentage of the unicorns use the Exact Brand Match (EBM) .COM domain name. The answer is 82.5%.
390 unicorns use brand match .com domain names (for example, Example Company uses example.com).
Companies That Own EBM But Not Use as Official Websites
Twenty companies use other domain names as their official website and redirect the brand match .com domain names to the official site. 13 of these companies use country-code domains as their official site.
Five companies use .com domain names other than their EBM. Two of them are worth mentioning: Invision is using invisionapp.com instead of invision.com. Keep is using gotokeep.com instead of keep.com.
Rapyd uses rapdy.net as the official website instead of rapdy.com.
Coursera uses coursera.org although the .com version is owned by them. This is mostly because of how they position themselves.
Some of the companies above purchased their EBM .com domain names later but didn’t migrate to them yet (maybe they won’t, forever).
Companies That Use EBM Domain Names Other Than .COM
Forty-one of unicorn companies use exact brand match domain names other than the .com extension (without owning the EBM .com one). The most used extensions are .IO with 8 domain names, .AI and .CN with 6 domain names.
There are 3 domain names for each .IN (India’s country-code domain extension) and COM.BR (Brazil’s country-code domain extension). Colombia’s .CO has 2 domain names.
There are one EBM domain names in the unicorn list for each of the following 13 extensions: .net, .bank, .group, .tech, .co.kr, .co.uk, .co.za, .com.cn, .eu, .id, .im, .jp, .me.
Nineteen of these billion-dollar companies use EBM domain names other than .com, but the .com versions are used by others. This is so bad for those companies.
Companies That Don’t use EBM Domain Names At All
Forty-two companies don’t use exact brand match domain names. More than 50% of these companies are from China. Almost all of these Chinese companies use .com domain names other than their brand name. Some of the domain names seem very unrelated to the brands.
There are 13 US unicorns that don’t use EBM domain names. All of these companies use domain names with prefix or suffix added to their brand names.
One of the companies in the unicorn list, LinkSure Network, is using a high-value domain name, wifi.com as its official web address.
To summarize the Exact Brand Match domain name usage of unicorn companies:
- 42 companies (8.9%) don’t use EBM at all.
- 41 companies (8.7%) use EBM domains with extensions other than .com.
- 390 companies (82.5%) use Exact Brand Match .com domain names.
- 20 EBM .COM domain names not owned by unicorn companies are listed for sale on marketplaces.
Credits to: dofo.com