Last year, Castello Cities Internet Network's CEO Michael Castello announced the sale of one of his most prized domain names: Whisky.com for $3.1m. In the first of a weekly feature entitled "Inside Interviews," I talk to the new owner of Whisky.com to see how the domain is being used almost 18 months after the sale. 1. For some of our readers who aren't aware of your company's background, could you give us a brief overview of your company? The Whisky.com Media Corporation is a spin off of The Whisky Store (Whisky.de), which happens to be one of the biggest whisky mail order stores worldwide. Due to red tape work whisky.de does not ship outside Germany. Whisky.com Media is still a small company with only three employees. We are developing the whisky.com domain and it will take still some time until we are as successful as whisky.de is today (10 million page views per month). 2. Congratulations on the acquisition of Whisky.com. Could you tell us how you went about acquiring the domain name? We were contacted by a domain broker from Canada. If you search for the keyword "whisky" or particular brand names on Google, there is no chance of missing us. 3. Could you tell us some of your reasoning behind the $3.1m Whisky.com valuation? If you look at the raw figures and the estimates Google gives for advertisement revenues, then such generic domains have a maximum value of a few hundred thousand US Dollars. But Fortune 100 companies pay a lot more for their names. There is an ideal value in these domains. But only for those companies, which are firstly able to afford them and secondly able to unleash their hidden value. 4. Would you have considered paying more than $3.1m for Whisky.com? No, it was the absolute maximum. But the Euro was strong then and from a European standpoint it was affordable. 5. How has owning whisky.com affected your business? Has there been an increase in website visitors & sales since your acquisition? We do not sell over the whisky.com website. We are still building up traffic. It took us more than 20 years to bring whisky.de to the pole position in the German whisky market. Give us five to ten years to achieve this for whisky.com. 6. Would you ever consider buying other premium domain names - such as Whiskey.com (an alternative spelling)? Or are you content with the domain names you own? Whiskey.com was often offered to us through brokers from Canada, US, Europe and Australia. But we are not willing to pay more than 310k$. That is a tenth of the money we paid for whisky.com. If you look at the estimates of Google, then whiskey.com has a higher value than whisky.com. But if you look at the market and the whisky lovers, then 90% of the connoisseurs go for expensive Scotch Single Malt Whisky and not for cheap Irish Whiskey or widely available Bourbon Whiskeys. And here lies the hidden reason, why we paid more for our domain. Professionals inside the domain buying and selling business do not have the insights into the markets. 7. What does the future hold for the Whisky.com domain name? Whisky.com lay nearly silent over the last few years. The page rank at Google wasn't really good. In the past few months we moved whisky.com to [Google's] first page and today, we are quite often already above the fold. In Germany we were able to beat Wikipedia and have a stable Number 1 position for the major whisky searches. It will take some years and if we are Number 1 in whisky worldwide we will find out what the future holds for us. We are thinking long term. Whisky is nothing to rush - whisky has so be savoured slowly. -- *The interview has been edited to correct grammatical errors* Inside Interviews is a blog series profiling the buyers of high-value domain names. Find out their motives, negotiation tactics, and their opinions on popular domaining topics only on the NamePros Blog.