Former ICANN CEO Fadi Chehadé appears to have a connection to the latest big deal in the domain name industry.
This morning, Internet Society announced it is selling Public Interest Registry, the non-profit that runs the .org domain name, to Ethos Capital.
Ethos Capital isn’t exactly a household name. In fact, it appears to have been set up in recent months. It just acquired its domain name EthosCapital.com at the end of last month.
The founder of Ethos Capital is Erik Brooks. He left ABRY Partners this year after spending two decades at the investment firm.
Does the name Abry ring a bell? That’s because it’s the company that bought new top level domain name company Donuts last year.
That deal involved Abry Senior Advisor Fadi Chehadé. Chehadé is the former CEO of ICANN, the group that oversees the domain name industry.
Now we have a twenty year veteran of Abry, who worked on the Donuts deal and was (or still is) a member of Donuts’ board, leaving this year to form a new entity that buys a registry, much like how Abry bought Donuts.
And the CEO of Public Interest Registry is Jon Nevett, one of the founders of Donuts.
Things get even connected.
On May 7 this year, Fadi Chehadé appears to have registered EthosCapital.org. He is listed as the owner in Whois. That was just before a Delaware company by the name Ethos Capital, LLC was formed.
I wonder why Abry didn’t invest in PIR? Was Ethos set up as a special entity to invest in PIR, and why? What is Chehadé’s connection?
The other person listed on Ethos Capital’s website is Nora Abusitta- Ouri. She worked for Chehadi at ICANN as SVP, Development and Public Responsibility Programs.
I’ve reached out to Ethos Capital, Chehadé, and Abry Partners about this and will update this story if I hear back.