Dex One, which announced it would be shutting down its Business.com operations last fall, is now selling the brand name and related assets of the business search engine to b-to-b lead generation company Resource Nation. A purchase price was not disclosed, although it is likely a steep discount to the $345 million Dex One paid for Business.com three-and-half years ago considering Dex One had publicly stated that its Business.com operations were not “viable.” PE firm JMI Equity has provided cash to Resource Nation to fund the purchase.
It sounds from the announcement as though the transaction will preserve much of Business.com. Dex One had said in November it would phase out the business and only hold on to the brand name and URL. Resource Nation however says it will keep “a number” of Business.com employees and integrate Business.com into Resource Nation.
It will also operate Business.com “under its distinct brand name.” That’s not surprising, considering the value of the Business.com domain name. The company’s founders purchased the Business.com URL for $7.5 million in 1999, making it one of the biggest domain sales to date.