Washington: It's not all that uncommon for someone to change their last name, perhaps when they get married, or become a famous movie star. But one US entrepreneur had a different reason to change his name. He has agreed to a new identity for a year to whatever name the highest bidder wanted in an online auction.
So 30-year-old Jason Sadler from Florida will become Jason HeadsetsDotCom on January 1 after the website Headsets.com agreed to pay Sadler $45,500 to legally change his name. "Throughout my life I've had three separate last names, none of which have carried any real meaning for me or my sense of identity," Sadler said on his website, buymylastname.com.
"So earlier this year when my mom let me know she'd be going through a divorce, it occurred to me that shedding my last name might actually make a lot of sense for me," said Sadler, who was then inspired to sell his last name through an online auction that allowed any company who wanted their business name as his new last name to submit a bid.
Voting began on November 1 and ended on Wednesday at midnight, with the highest bidder being Headsets.com, which states on its website that it is America's leading provider of office telephone earpieces. Sadler said on his website that he "will now become a walking, talking billboard" for the company, and is "ready and willing" to expand upon any further marketing ideas for an additional cost.
"We've done some wacky marketing things ourselves in the past," Mike Faith, president of Headsets.com, told CNN about Sadler's idea that he said is a perfect fit for the company. Twenty-five businesses participated in the auction, with Headsets.com and PawnUp.com battling it out until the very end.
Sadler said he will donate 10 percent of the money earned from the auction to a non-profit organization called Cheerful Givers, which is committed to giving less fortunate children gifts on their birthdays and holidays. He will use the rest for future marketing ideas. Self-branding is not a new concept for Sadler. In 2009, he started an advertising campaign where he raised more than $66,000 by wearing different company t-shirts.