Portfolio gTLD registries Famous Four Media and Minds + Machines have both announced that they’re formally entering the Chinese market.
Both companies are establishing “wholly foreign-owned enterprises” (WFOEs), a form of company that does not require local investment, on the mainland.
The moves are aimed at getting the registries’ respective gTLDs accredited by the Chinese government, something that is required before local registrants are allowed to use them.
In a press release, FFM senior legal counsel Oliver Smith said:
It was clear to us soon after launching our first domain registry that domain registrations from China comprised a strong proportion of the total. It was a natural progression of our strategy to build a physical presence in China. The accreditation process is complicated but well-structured and, thanks to the help of advice from the Chinese government, should be completed relatively quickly.
In some of Famous Four’s gTLDs, Chinese registrars are the overwhelming majority of the sales channel.
In .win, the registry’s biggest-seller, China was responsible for about 85% of registrations at the last count, for example.
Meanwhile, M+M is taking a slightly different route into the country.
It said today that while it also shortly plans to open a WFOE, it has also partnered with ZDNS, a local provider of proxy services for registries.
ZDNS was the company XYZ.com partnered with for its controversial launch into China. According to M+M, it’s also working with .CLUB Domains and some Chinese gTLD registries.
M+M is also using the specialist consultancy Allegravita for its marketing there.
Its local entity will be called Beijing Ming Zhi Mo Si Technology Company Limited (which may or may not translate to something like “Wise Mediation”).
M+M’s first Chinese launches will be .beer, .fashion, .fit, .law, .wedding, .work and .yoga, with .vip and .购物 (“.shopping”) coming later in the year.