Following the news that Uniregistry and Top Level Domain Holdings are to work together on the .country new gTLD, larger portfolio applicant Donuts has said it’s not interested in similar arrangements.
While not entirely ruling out joint ventures along the lines of the .country tie-up, company VP of communications Mason Cole told DI that Donuts’ strategy is to completely own each of the new gTLDs it has applied for.
“We aren’t categorically ruling anything out, but any kind of proposal would have to be very compelling,” he said. “Our strategy from the beginning has been, and still is, to secure the strings we applied for and manage them ourselves.”
While TLDH and Uniregistry seem open to such partnerships, Donuts’ stance appears to reduce the likelihood of three-way joint ventures on the four applications for which the three companies are the only applicants.
Donuts is also in two-horse races on an additional 58 strings.
The company, which is believed to have raised $100 million to $150 million in venture capital funding, is a strong supporter of private auctions to settle contention sets.
It originally brought the auctioneer Cramton Associates, which runs ApplicantAuction.com. into the ICANN process.
Cramton, according to a blog post this week, expects to run a mock auction May 23 and start auctions proper five days later.
ICANN does not expect to finish delivering the results of Initial Evaluation until August, so it seems possible some applicants may participate before they know if they’ve passed.