Category: .ae domaining

The UAE internet domain regulator has denied a company its own .ae website, despite the firm holding a 12-year-old trademark for the name in question.
Michael Reed, a businessman from the UK, had decided to begin selling Irena, a nutritional supplement, in the UAE and registered the domain with AEDA, the regulatory body for the country’s internet domain name.

But after the name was registered, the agency deleted the domain, saying it belonged to the International Renewable Energy Association (IRENA), an intergovernmental organisation that will be headquartered in Abu Dhabi.

“If it’s a governmental organisation then, as per their own rules, is the correct top level domain,” Reed said.

In addition, the parent company of Reed’s firm has held the trademark for Irena in Europe and the UK for the past twelve years, he added.

The incident has made the company scrap its plans to enter the UAE market.

AEDA declined to comment.

The agency’s website states that it will “continually strive to maintain best practice for the administration of the .ae [domain] and will administer the .ae domain in a fair and transparent manner”.


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horseaelogoAbu Dhabi based The National daily has published an article about the recent sale and about the overall .ae domain name industry. This includes current WIPO dispute cases on domains such as dunkin donuts and some others.

The most exiting part is that my interview with the reporter has been published as well, along with my comments and thoughts on the sale and the market! Read the full story in the paper (29th July) or online here…

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Through an exclusive contact with the domain seller, we where able to get lots of insight on the domain name.

Munir: The domain was sold a day before the posted deadline of July 26, which shows that a huge interest has been received by the seller.

Seller: “Deserving personality was decided even before the final date. Since last evening we have posted “Finalized” in the website.”

Munir: But what was the actual selling price and what was the response from the buyers; considering the high volume of advertising in a 5 day campaign through 2 newspapers (Business 24/7 and Arabic Al Bayan) and 3 radio channels (Noor Dubai, Al Khaleejiya and Al Arabiya)?

Seller: “I can say that we got lot of offers and only a couple of them were serious. To be precise, only seven were genuine. Three of them above the minimum offer amount of Five million (AED), between 5 and 6. Others very serious about it, and were ready to go above 6 million (AED). The offer amount was then appreciated to 6 Million from 23rd July Saturday in the advertisements and the website.”

Munir: This is hilarious! It’s the first time in the history of the .ae cctld that a domain name fetched such a huge sum. This sale can’t be even compared to the recent 2 character sale, which fetched just AED 5.1 million (US$ 1.4 million). This .com is 2 character generic and will have even a higher resale value later. But think about it, .com has been there since the 90’s and the .ae (in its new format after aeDA’s introduction in August 2008) is just about a year old!

This sale is a true record and stereotype breaker and will surely boost the .ae market and its publicity. No one could ever think that such a huge sale can occur in a young market like the .ae

The sale will add a benchmark to the .ae aftermarket and will boost the confidence of traders. The volume of generic and keyword .ae domain name registrations (plenty of which are still available) will surely shoot up.

Note: The sale will be considered official once the whois will reflect a change of ownership.

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On Saturday July 25 there was a price update on website, which stated that offers of AED 6 million are now accepted (whereas previously it stated 5 million) and today on the 26th and as promised by the seller, the sale has been finally finalized. This is what the website’s landing page conveys.

We have made an attempt to find out the actual sale price, but no news as of this moment.

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That’s right, its up at 5 million Dirhams (US$ 1,366,120). This is so far the highest public asking price for a domain name of this kind, with a first of it’s kind superior public exposure by advertising the name in the UAE daily “Business 24/7” dated July 22, 2009. A full page ad titled “Premium domain name for passionate Horse lovers” and a clean website landing page that has an Arabic voice conveying the same, which leads to a thought that the seller is targeting rich local Emarati horse lovers.

About the seller: the whois shows Abdul Musavir Abdul Kader and further research shows Abdul Musavir, OZONE GROUP, INDIA as the seller and the domain name looks to be registered before August 2008 (that’s when aeDA came into the market).

From my long experience with the .ae’s, this domain name might not fetch the asking price, but due to the nature of the advertising, the name itself and the population’s mentality of owning cool and “VIP” names and plate number might even lead to a sale.

Keep in mind that the UAE is known for its royal and world’s richest horse race competition and the rural of Dubai is said to own a huge horse training facility somewhere in the most royal location of England.

The ad mentions July 26 as the date of sale finalizing and we keep monitoring the whois in case of name changes which would mean a sale.

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Dunkin’ Brands, through two intellectual property holding companies, has filed for arbitration to get United Arab Emirates .ae domain names related to two of its brands.

The two separate cases were filed with World Intellectual Property Organization. In the first case, the company filed for two domains related to Dunkin’ Donuts: and The second case is for Baskin Robbins: and

United Arab Emirates recently liberalized its registration rules. The domain names were probably registered after the registration rules changed.

Both Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin Robbins have stores in United Arab Emirates.

All of the domain names are registered to Ali Abdelwahed. Abdelwahed also received a domain arbitration filing for, filed by the popular fast food restaurant chain. Hardees is part of CKE Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE: CKR).

All the 4 domains are registered with IP Mirror, an aeDA accredited registrar. The whois record shows that today the aeDA has added a few restrictions on the domains in the global DNS, mainly the following:
# serverUpdateProhibited – under dispute
# serverTransferProhibited – under dispute
# serverDeleteProhibited – under dispute
# serverRenewProhibited – under dispute
These show that an action is currently being carried out. We will monitor and keep you posted on the process.


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We have been able to uncover even more great .ae domain sales history and whats more incredible is the amount of $$$ that these were sold for! >> Sold for ~50,000 AED (US$ 13,660) >>This is awesome!! (the super fast 4×4 Nissan VTC) >> Sold for 3,000 AED (US$ 820) & >> 10,000 AED for both (US$ 2732)

All these were sold between March to May 2009!

Those figures are getting crazy for .ae domain names! Still unconvinced?

[Thanks to Mohammad Alhamed for the sources]

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Good news for all domainers out there who have been looking for a safe and secure way of selling and transfering .ae domain names to another party. (aka, a .ae accredited registrar under aeDA has launched this new and exclusive service for both its clients and those who are simply looking for an effective way to sell/buy .ae domain names. The services they provide include: Full advise, brokerage/ payment terms/ registrant/registrar transfer and full escrow. More at

Happy Domaining!

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It is not a secret that there are many sales going in private with any real estate (digital and others) and it is simply not reported; or at least why should it be reported? In the case of domain names this is also true.

Every day, thousands of queries are made on the .ae whois database by people in search of good and generic names, or simply “domaining”. Some of these searches, especially those in the area of specific interest end up as sales and transfer of ownership.

Most of these are obviously done in private and this why would anyone case to report these, and remember that we are taking about a cctld that is perhaps not known to everyone.

I managed to lookup some of those sales through colleagues in the industry and friends, and I was extremely surprised by the closing values them! If you have read my previous post about the sale of for US$8000, then it is just a small percentage of the value compared to what some other unreported domains went for.

To disclose some of those domains and their approximate sale prices (approximate because the owners hassled to reveal the real once!)

Let’s look at , this domain name has sealed for a ~50,000 AED (US$ 13,660) by Abu Dhabi police sometime back before 2008, however for some reason the whois now shows ownership by a free zone firm, interesting. Perhaps they did not renew it on time.

Another bunch of domain names like,,, and many other numerical domains went all for over 5,000 AED (US$ 1,366). You might ask a question why the heck numerical domains! So do we! The reason apparently is that as many might know about the local passion for “cool numbers” for mobile sim cards, car plates and now for the domain names! In fact some of those domains were listed on Arabic forums and sold there aswell. Here is a mentality that my local friend shared with me:

Imagine you get a car plate number 777, and your mobile number also contains 777 and now you can have a domain name as (who cares what I will use it for or even how to use it!) Believe it or not that is exactly what is happening here.

So get your thoughts straight and start getting some of those cools names before its too late! I am off to do the same.

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Thats right, now there is a place for all .ae domainers to talk. 

After long and tedious brainstorming sessions, we have finally decided to launch this blog for all of you out there looking for a piece of pie in the .ae market. It would be of a great deal if this blog can eventually turn in to the main point of contact and research about the .ae cctld. Another great option that we are planning to include, is history of .ae domain name sales, and major industry news related to the .ae

Stay tuned to the blog and make sure you bookmark the url, we will be updating soon.

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