A peek inside the world’s first domain name themed coffee shop.

Every year something innovative happens in the domain name industry that I would not have expected. It’s happened every year I’ve been in this business—since 1996.

Last year was no exception. One innovation was the opening of the world’s first domain name-themed coffee shop, China.VC, in the Haidian district of Beijing. This one district alone contains 3.2 million inhabitants in the capital city of 22 million, and is known to be a center of innovation and hotbed for startup activity.

Plenty of foot traffic everywhere you look. Plenty of young tech-minded folks keen to connect with others interested in investing their new found relative wealth. So why not entice them and others to sip some good coffee and learn about and/or invest in domain names while in the shop?

We hung around and chatted with some of the local patrons while shooting some video for ChopChop.domains, TLD Registry’s new site that lets user find and buy Chinese domain names, even if they don’t speak Chinese. Disclosure: I am a Vice-President at TLD Registry.

We also managed to chat on camera with two of the co-founders, and discussed:

  • How did you get started in the domain name industry?
  • Considering the incredible rise in prices last year (2015) where do you think the domain market is going this year?
  • Why are people in China who have never been in the domain business getting into it? Is it the economy? What do you think is making people decide to invest in domain names instead of gold, commodities, or stocks?

The day we dropped by the cafe they were conducting a live domain name auction so it was quite busy.

Afterwards we posed with most of the attendees.  A very friendly and warm welcome from folks eager to connect with others in the west about domain name opportunities!

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