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What's in a name? Man auctions surname

By Ramy Inocencio, for CNN
updated 7:53 PM EST, Thu December 13, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Winning bidder pays $45,500 to change surname to "Headsets.com"
  • American entrepreneur Jason Sadler will assume new last name for 2013
  • Sadler: "Mom going through divorce, I don't need this last name anymore"
  • Highest bidder gets to name Sadler but legally retains "last right of refusal"

Read a version of this story in Arabic.

(CNN) -- Some people might give you the shirt off their back for free. Others might give you their last name -- for a fee.

"I just saw an opportunity -- my mom is going through a divorce and I don't need this last name anymore," explained 30-year old entrepreneur Jason Sadler, who lives in Jacksonville, Florida. "I thought 'How am I going to find a new last name?' well 'Why not just sell it?'"

To many, the idea of selling off the family surname might be crazy. Sadler says he wants to reinvest the money he makes into other "fun marketing things" and "give 10% of it to charity."

The bidding ended December 13 on Sadler's website -- buymylastname.com -- and the winning bidder will pay $45,500 for Sadler to change his name to Jason Headsets.com.

For all of 2013, Sadler will legally assume the new surname decided by the winning bidder and will need to change all official forms of identification.

The legal process may take several weeks, according to the Florida state courts system, and involves submitting fingerprints for a state and national criminal check, the associated cost for processing, a court date to consider the name change request and a judge's final approval.

The reason I say that is that I don't want this last name anymore. The name Sadler doesn't mean anything to me anymore. And for me I want to work with a brand.
Jason Sadler

This is not Sadler's first attempt at a more creative -- if unorthodox -- moneymaking scheme. In 2009, the entrepreneur started wearing the shirts of other companies, serving as a walking ad space for a day. He pulled in more than $66,000 on top of his regular day job that first year. That start-up still operates today at iwearyourshirt.com.

Watch: Human advertising in space

Sadler, interviewed earlier in the week by CNN, rejects the idea that he is selling out.

"The reason I say that is that I don't want this last name anymore. The name Sadler doesn't mean anything to me anymore. And for me I want to work with a brand. I live in this kind of online marketing world and I'm very passionate about it. If I said I'll take any casino or pornography site -- that would be selling out."

Sadler set some guidelines before the winning bid.

"I had some legalese written up. If you read the terms and conditions -- nothing political, nothing religious, nothing defaming anybody. There's been a lot of talk on the internet about giving me a dumb last name. It's just not going to happen. I have the last right of refusal."

Beyond 2013, Sadler says he might do it over again and represent someone new or just "pick a random name from the phone book."

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