ICANN forecasts 646 applications will be withdrawn, mostly after the initial evaluation period.
66 applications for new top level domain names have been withdrawn as of today. For budgeting purposes, ICANN projects that number will explode to 646 before everything is said and done.
The number was disclosed in ICANN’s proposed operating plan and budget for the 2014 financial year, which begins in July 2013. The number is up from a previously budgeted 545 applications withdrawn.
ICANN expects 105 applications will be withdrawn before they pass through the initial evaluation phase. Applicants get a 70% refund of their $185,000 application fee in this case.
A further 390 applications are projected to be withdrawn after initial evaluation but before string contention resolutions, dispute resolution is completed, or extended evaluation. ICANN is betting that many applicants in contention sets will withdraw as applicants strike deals with each other. These applicants will get a 35% refund.
The forecast shows a further 150 applications withdrawn after string contention resolution, dispute resolution, and extended evaluation. These applicants will get 20% of their money back.
This is a reverse of the prior forecast, which predicted most withdraws would come only after final contention resolution. Frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised if more companies settle their contention sets privately before initial evaluation results are posted.
One application was withdrawn within 21 days of getting a GAC Early Warning. That applicant received an 80% refund.