Need Advice: 'Interested in Selling Your Website?' Fishing for Info

Discussion in 'Board Room' started by animalstyle, Jan 29, 2018.

  1. animalstyle

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    animalstyle

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    I received an email today from a capital company that invests in digital assets (100+ websites, 12M+ in assets). The company is interested in buying my long-running authority site. I believe the request is fake and is in fact an attempt to gain information or buy the site at a very discounted rate by a monopoly company that 'owns' the industry that my authority site covers.

    Backstory:
    This is all happening on the same site that I've talked about extensively on these forums. Summary:
    • This website is very niched down to a specific industry which has one large monopoly player.
    • This monopoly player is known for very heavy handed legal action to prevent competition.
    • I previously had an affiliate/lead agreement with the monopoly player and made good money for one year. The company hired a CMO and at a similar time, they pulled the plug on the agreement.
    • I had a 5 minute call with the CMO just after the agreement ended that felt like a very healthy conversation. After, she ignored any contact and played complete radio silence.
    • I continued to build and grow the site and resumed monetization through a 3rd party that the monopoly company works with for a much lower revenue.
    • After a one year gap, I've begun contacting the company again. Multiple emails and daily phone calls have gone unanswered for nearly a month - they are obviously choosing not to communicate with me.
    I know this site is of high value to the monopoly player. The site is dominant in the niche. Because I don't have an advertising agreement with the monopoly player, I am making a fraction of the potential that the traffic offers. If held by the monopoly player, the site is of very high value to them.

    Why I think this is the company fishing for my site through a 3rd party:
    • I've never had another inquiry about buying the site.
    • The monopoly player sees the site continue to grow.
    • The timing makes sense based on my constant outreach
    • The capital company and the monopoly player are located in the same city.
    What has happened:
    • The capital company emailed me their 'came across my site and were impressed'. They 'own a similar website in the niche (bullshit) and are looking to expand' template.
    • I called back, a receptionist told me the woman who emailed me was out for the day.
    • The woman emailed me back an hour later and asked for 'basic stats' to make an offer. They want, monthly unique visitors, monthly pageviews, average earnings and revenue sources, background info and future potential possibilities, and my location.
    What my gut says to do:
    • Do not send any information.
    • Respond asking for more information on why they are interested in the site.
    I need advice on how to:
    1. Protect myself from being taken.
    2. Leverage this potential opportunity (ultimately I'd likely offload the site if it was priced according to the value that it is worth to the monopoly company)
     
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  2. coredev

    coredev

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    You posted the other thread about this site on Feb 9, 2017

    Now you posted this on Jan 29, 2018

    A year has passed and you don't seem to have a solution yet.

    Do you think it's time to move on?



    The problem I see is you have is you don't own the product / service. You positioned yourself as an affiliate.



    The CMO probably looked things over and realized that if they stop paying you - you'll go away.

    I have read the other thread you mentioned - you're an intelligent person.

    If your gut feeling is that they are just fishing for info - then you are probably right.



    Bottom line - You either need to focus on this site and start figuring it out or sell it to them cheap and move on.

    I don't want to read this again in early 2019.
     
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  3. animalstyle

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    animalstyle

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    Thanks @coredev

    I guess the point I am making is that they did, and I haven't. I am hoping this is a sign that I'll be able to get what the site is worth, not some lowball offer (that I wouldn't take).

    In the end, the time investment for return to maintain the site and just wait and see if the right price comes through. If it does, great. If not, great.

    Seeing this from outside myself, it looks like I've just got a personal attachment to the project. I appreciate your feedback and I am going to just take another step to disconnect my emotions from the project.
     
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  4. Samwise89

    Samwise89

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    I don't think you can protect yourself from being taken. They have all of the leverage. They don't need your site, but they want it. That's a big difference. If they absolutely had to have you you'd still have the lead agreement going.

    I agree with @coredev, you've been talking about this for forever. I'd put it in the back of my mind and give it the least amount of time possible and move on with my life. Maybe the day comes where they have another competitor and you can play ball then in negotiations. But right now, i'd stop letting it eat up my head space. I'd take my monthly money and move on.

    You could also hire some hot shot to contact and make negotiations and get a deal done and cut him a percentage.
     
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