As Neustar celebrates its 10-year corporate anniversary, it seems a good time to take stock of where we are within the dynamic Internet industry. Change and growth have been constants in the domain business, and we've even had to survive a pretty challenging recession. Neustar is thrilled to be where we are — our Domain Name Registry business is growing, and we're involved in several exciting activities.
Organizations continue to explore alternative gTLDs, and .BIZ is demonstrating strong market momentum. One- and two-character .BIZ domains became available last year and the market demand has proven very strong. This is evidenced by Overstock's use of O.BIZ as its primary B2B website. Auctions for other one- and two-character .BIZ names are fetching very attractive prices, proving that the .BIZ domain is a high-value choice. Two-character names are available at www.sedo.com. In addition, if you didn't catch any of the diggnation coverage of the my.BIZ contest, please check out the winners and today's top .BIZ sites here.
.US is also on a positive trajectory in the first half of 2010 as we continue to see new adds and renewal rates trending upward. We recently launched a .US blog and forum that allow the community an unprecedented opportunity to discuss and engage around issues related to the .US TLD. These include one- and two-character .US names, registry lock service, a URL shortener, and a new .KIDS.US program. Please go to usblog.neustar.us to learn more.
We're also in the middle of a very exciting launch for the new .CO domain. Neustar is proud to have been chosen as the technical partner for the .CO Registry. With early adopters launching sites using .CO domain names, including TechCrunch (Disrupt.co), Internet Week in New York (iwny.co), Politico (Politi.co) and Twitter (t.co), the reaction across the globe has been extremely positive! The reaction within Colombia, which I witnessed firsthand during a recent visit, has also been fantastic! The.CO sunrise period is wrapping up on June 10, followed by land rush on June 21, with General Availability scheduled for July 20. For more information, please check out .CO Internet's web site here.
Looking ahead for the next growth opportunity, you need not look any further than ICANN's decision to launch new generic top level domains (gTLDs). This is a new and innovative way to expand the Internet, and we've seen some great examples of potential applicants with community-focused ideas, strong constituency support, and creative marketing concepts.
There continues to be a lot of commentary and debate in our industry. Version 4.0 of the Draft Applicant Guidebook has just been published, and we look forward to the continued dialogue and whatever else emerges from the ICANN meetings in Brussels later this month. Executed properly, these new domain names can drive innovation and open up new opportunities on the Internet. We look forward with interest to being active participants.
In summary, it's an exciting time for the domain name business and for Neustar. We recognize the achievements and growth of our industry overall, and look in awe at how far we've come and what it might mean for the next 10 years. We look forward to continuing to share this experience with you and to seeing you at ICANN Brussels!
Written by Tim Switzer
NeuStar provides market-leading and innovative services that enable trusted communication across networks, applications, and enterprises around the world. (Learn More)
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