Germany’s .de country code top level domain was originally created in 1986, the (de) make up the first two letters in their country’s name (Deutschland). In the mid-late 1980’s, a name server service was created by the Informatikrechner-Betriebsgruppe in Dortmund, Germany. In 1994, a German University became interested and ran the registry until it was realized that .de domain names were going to be in demand. The number of registrations jumped from 1,000 – 20,000 from 1994-1996. It wasn’t until 1996 when DENIC of Germany was officially headquartered in Frankfurt after it had been taken over by several cooperative societies that helped provide infrastructure and growth to the system.
The .de extension is the second most registered ccTLD behind only .cn of China. I don’t know the exact number of domains .de carries right now, however at the tail end of 2009 there we well over 13 million .de domains registered. .De is very deeply engrained in Germany’s culture they are the most common extension used by far for German sites. Many domain investors gain confidence by seeing how well .de domain sales have done over the last few year. Below are a few .de sales from the most recent DNJournal report (sales prices rounded to nearest figure):
Already this year there has been two six figure sales in the .de realm – Website.de sold for $140k and Free-sms.de sold for $162k. Of course, the highest reported sale .de sale is Shopping.de which went for $2.8 million in 2008, also breaking the million dollar barrier was Kredit.de which sold in 2008 for $1.2 million. Will this be the year that we see another multi-million dollar .de sale? I think yes, will be tough to beat the $2.8 million, but I predict there will be a handful in the seven figure range. Interested in registering some .de domain names? My sponsor, 101domain.com has a very reasonable rate to register .de at $17.95/year.