What just happened? Website building and hosting specialist Squarespace has agreed to purchase Google's domain name registrar service. Terms of the deal weren't shared but a person familiar with the deal told Bloomberg it was valued at around $180 million.
Google Domains launched just over nine years ago to the day, offering basic domain name services including registration and DNS forwarding as well as domain and e-mail forwarding. The service is accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and according to the press release, the sale includes approximately 10 million domains currently hosted on Google Domains impacting millions of customers.
Squarespace founder and CEO Anthony Casalena said they have served millions using their existing domain products and are committed to ensuring a seamless transition. Matt Madrigal, VP and GM of merchant shopping for Google, said they are selling off the business unit in a continued effort to sharpen their focus.
Squarespace will honor all existing Google Domains customer renewal prices for at least a year following the deal's closure. The new owner will also provide "additional incentives" in an effort to get Google Domains customers to build a website using Squarespace, and to adopt the company's other products and services. Squarespace will additionally become the exclusive provider for customers purchasing a domain alongside their Google Workspace subscription.
Squarespace plans to leverage Google's infrastructure power during the migration period to ensure a seamless transition.
Google Domains joins a comically long list of products that Google has sent to the graveyard over the years. Killed by Google maintains a list of every service, app, and piece of hardware that Google has put to pasture over the years including when it was launched, when the plug was pulled, and a brief description. As of this writing, there are 286 products in the database.
Both parties expect the deal to be finalized sometime during the third quarter of 2023, pending customary regulatory approval.