The winning bid of $38,100 was made by an eBay member known only as "greatdealsdepot." Earlier, bids had climbed above $160,000, but Alex Tew, the British student whose September idea made him a millionaire, said that several high bidders had withdrawn, while others were clearly spurious.
"There were higher bids made but these turned out to be non-serious bids so I removed them just prior to the auction ending," Tew wrote on his MillionDollarHomepage.com blog.
The eBay auction closed Tew's site to advertisers, who have paid him a total of $1,037,100 for small ads on his jam-packed page. He's pledged to keep the site running for at least five years.
Tew's page was actually too successful, said a U.K. Web performance measurement company, which noted that the site was down for several hours early Thursday due to the publicity from major media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal. According to Netcraft, the site was offline before and after midnight, and intermittently during the morning, London time.
Previously, Tew had praised his site's hosting company, Englishtown, N.J.-based Sitelutions, which until Thursday was handling the traffic: as many as 500,000 unique visitors per day, with a bandwidth appetite of up to 200 megabits per second, said Netcraft.
Netcraft has posted a dynamically-updated chart of MillionDollarHomepage's performance here.
Although Tew attended university last fall, he now says he will take the rest of the year off to "organize my life, consolidate my financial position, and explore some of the new opportunities that have presented themselves."