Domain Name Wire

Domain Name Wire

Displaying archives for the month of "October 2014"

  • ICANN slashes new TLD forecast, but is it enough?

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Domain Registrars
    3. 16 Comments

    ICANN is forecasting 15 million new TLD registrations during the current fiscal year.

    ICANN forecastICANN has slashed the number of new top level domain name registrations it expects during this fiscal year for budgeting purposes, but is its picture still too rosy?

    That’s a question that members of the Registrar Stakeholders group asked ICANN’s board last week in Los Angeles.

    In May, ICANN set a draft proposed budget for the 2015 fiscal year, which runs from this July to June 2015. Its revenue forecast from new top level domain names included a startling number of second level registrations under new TLDs: 33 million.

    It has since revised the forecast down 55% to just 15 million.

    Given results so far, it hardly seems likely that 15 million new domains will be registered in new TLDs before next summer — even if you include registrations occurring before the fiscal year began. There are currently about 2.8 million registrations.

    Domain registrars are concerned that they’ll get stuck holding the bag if revenue comes in below target.

    New TLD registries pay ICANN a fixed fee of $6,500 per quarter ($25,000 per year). If they have more than 50,000 “transactions” in a year, they pay 25 cents per domain. Transactions are actually domain-years, not registrations, but ICANN’s budget refers to a number of domains registered as an assumption in its forecast. I’m not sure how ICANN calculates this in the budget; they must be assuming a certain number of TLDs cross this threshold.

    Should domain registrations come in below forecast, then ICANN will have a revenue shortfall. The easiest place to make that up, the registrars fear, is by increasing the variable registrar fee on domain name registrations. That’s the 18 cent “ICANN Tax” you usually see passed on to the customer.

    ICANN’s latest FY2015 budget cites the number of new TLD registrations as a risk factor. In fact, it mentions the risk of a “lower number of transactions per registry” as “high”, and lists the likelihood of a “higher number of transactions per registry” as low.

    It certainly seems that ICANN should be planning for a lot fewer registrations than are in its budget.

  • ICANN struggles to beat echo chamber after .Gay decision

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 23 Comments

    Many responses to .gay community application decision are oversimplifying what happened…and getting it wrong.

    In headlines and tweets, it’s pretty easy to knock ICANN for a recent decision not granting .gay applicant dotgay llc community status for the domain name.

    icann-gay-2
    Click to continue reading…

  • Paradise.com, Holiday.com and Iraq.com hit auction block next month

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Domain Sales
    3. 0 Comments

    Valuable domain names go up for sale next month.

    Breathe Luxury domain name auctionFor a company I hadn’t heard of before it announced it was auctioning Holiday.com a couple months ago, Breathe Luxury has assembled an impressive list of domain names for its auction next month.

    The company will auction off dozens of domain names in conjunction with the World Travel Market conference in London November 5. Among the domain names for sale: Click here to continue reading…

  • AnnualCreditReport.com goes after a big typosquatter

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 4 Comments

    Company behind government-mandated free annual credit report site demands control of 227 typos.

    Central Source, a company created by the three major U.S. consumer credit bureaus, has filed an in rem lawsuit against 227 typos of its AnnualCreditReport.com domain name.

    This is the sixth cybersquatting lawsuit the company has filed this year to crack down on people typosquatting its domain name.

    A test of the domain names shows that most use Moniker forwarding to land on a parked page at AAnnualReport.com. That domain has a disclaimer on it saying it’s not affiliated with the US-government mandated site that provides a free annual credit report: Click here to continue reading…

  • Afilias plans to raise $100 million, warchest will help in new top level domain auctions

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Domain Services
    3. 0 Comments

    Afilias will float its shares on the AIM next month, and use proceeds in part to fund upcoming new TLD auctions.

    AfiliasDomain name registry Afilias announced today that it intends to trade on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM, raising $100 million.

    In doing so, Afilias will join fellow registries Minds + Machines and CentralNic on AIM.

    Afilias says its registry operations are second only to Verisign in size. It supports more than 20 million domain names; 6.6 million directly and 13.5 million as a registry service provider to other registries.

    The company operates the .info, .mobi and .pro top level domain names and 8 more (including .blue, .pink and .black) as part of the new top level domain name program. These make up the 6.6 million.

    The 13.5 million as a service provider cover .org, .asia and a number of country code top level domain names. This number should grow as its new top level domain name customers launch their domains.

    Afilias generated $77.625 million in revenue last year, up slightly from $74.5 million in the year prior. It had an operating profit of $30.4 million last year and threw off a whopping $45.9 million in operating cash flow.

    Through the first six months this year, the company had revenue of $39.4 million.

    Afilias says it will use the bankroll to acquire contested new TLDs in upcoming auctions, acquire existing TLDs and domain name businesses, and develop the company’s registrar business to become a vertically integrated operation.

    The company plans to be admitted to the AIM next month.