interviews Inside Interview: Here's Why Hive Bought Hive.com

There are relatively few startups who truly appreciate the power of a great domain name, but in this Inside Interview, we are speaking to the CEO of a company that made the decision to create a smart workflow application and house it on an incredibly powerful one-word .COM.

John Furneaux is the CEO of Hive, a company that was founded in June 2015 and has raised $1.4 million in funding, according to Crunchbase. Hive is a popular company name, yet a startup that launched less than two years ago was able to acquire Hive.com. In this interview, we speak with John about Hive, and why he bought Hive.com.


Can you tell us about yourself and the company behind Hive.com?
We're Hive, and we make the simplest teamwork tool in the world. Smart teams like Uber, Nike and Pinterest know about Hive, and use it to help them focus 100% on doing what they're great at.

Why did you originally decide to brand your company under the name “Hive”, and were there any other brand names you were considering?
Bees are the most badass collaborators on the planet. They work together to achieve amazing things that they couldn't achieve alone. I came up with the name, but we considered lots of names based on animals that work well together. We thought about beavers, ants and dolphins, but they don't have a well-named home.

Why did you decide to buy the domain Hive.com?
We partnered with the owner who believed in what we are building. It was a great offer that we couldn't refuse.

Did you have other domains under consideration, or was your target name always Hive.com?
We always wanted hive.com, but we originally launched as hiveteams.com.

If you were unable to acquire hive.com, would you have stuck with HiveTeams.com, or would you have used a shorter name such as hive.co or hive.io?
Either of those domains would have been preferable to HiveTeams.com, but both were taken by active companies.

Are you able to tell us how much you paid for Hive.com, and why you opted to pay a premium to buy this name?
I can’t disclose the amount, but I can tell you that it was worth it.

Do you think buying Hive.com was a good investment in your company?
I believe that a credible domain name is absolutely critical to success, especially for a B2B business. It was a top priority for us. We saw a 40% increase in traffic immediately after securing our preferred domain.

What would your advice be to other startups or companies looking at buying a premium domain name?
Think about what you can offer the seller to be capital efficient on the purchase.

Do you think that buying the right name should be a priority for startups?
Yes, 100%.

Thanks to John for the interesting insight into Hive, and Hive.com. Hive is available to try for free at Hive.com, where you can also find out more about the company.
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Established Member
Thanks for this 1-on-1. I've noted numerous start-ups, with great products, but they launch on a second tier or worst platform. In case, the domain is owned, but not developed; and a proper capital offer would likely persuade the domain registrant to sell.

Hive.com versus HiveTeams.com is a textbook example of getting it wrong, then getting it right.