Fadi Chehade’s internationalization strategy for ICANN will see it open up two “hub” offices, one in Singapore and one in Istanbul, Turkey, according to reports.
The two new offices would be not just regional satellites, judging by reports from JPNIC and ZDNet. Chehade seems to be talking about both hubs taking on roughly equal prominence to its existing LA headquarters.
“This is not an office, this will be an actual hub and part of the core fabric of how we run ICANN,” he elaborated, adding the hubs would handle the same operations as that of its current Los Angeles, U.S., headquarters. “In Singapore we may be supporting Asia, but at different times of the day we may be supporting Europe.”
Both cities are often considered “gateways” to their respective regions.
Singapore has its attractive western-style business environment and widespread use of English, and Istanbul has a close cultural and geographic proximity to both Europe and the Middle-East.
ICANN has visited Singapore twice before — it held its inaugural meeting there in 1998 and approved the new gTLD program there in 2011 — and is to return in 2014.
Other satellite offices, for example in Tokyo and/or Beijing, could follow, Chehade reportedly said.
Channel Islands ccTLD manager Nigel Roberts is also reporting that ICANN staff currently based in LA may be offered the chance to relocate to one of the new hubs.
The new moves follow the recent closure of the Sydney, Australia office.