Afilias connects the world with reliable, secure, scalable and globally available technology that makes Internet addresses more accessible and useful.
Jonathan Robinson has extensive executive and non-executive experience in the Domain Name industry over many years. He was a co-founder of NetBenefit in 1995, a supplier of Domain Name management and associated services, which was admitted to the London Stock Exchange (AIM) in June 1999. Jonathan served as a main board director at NetBenefit from 1999 to 2009, which was subsequently renamed Group NBT plc in 2004, and then renamed NetNames in 2011 following its acquisition by HgCapital. He previously served two terms as a non-executive director on the board of Nominet. Jonathan also served as Chair of the ICANN GNSO (Generic Names Supporting Organization) Council for three consecutive terms until 2015. He has served as a director of Afilias since 2001 and was appointed Executive Chairman in 2014.
Chief Executive Officer
Hal Lubsen is a co-founder of Afilias, and has over 50 years of business experience including 17 years in the Domain Name industry, through executive roles at both Domain Name companies and associations. In 1997 he co-founded the Registrar Domain Bank, one of the Internet’s first Registrars and one of Afilias’ founding members, and remained involved in the business until it was sold in 2005. Hal was formerly an Executive Committee member of the Internet Council of Registrars (CORE), a Swiss not-for-profit membership association of Domain Name businesses that was formed in 1997. He has been a director of Afilias since it was founded and has served as its Chief Executive Officer since 2001. Highlights during Hal’s tenure at Afilias include the launch and development of .INFO and the transition of .ORG onto the Afilias registry platform.
Chief Financial Officer
Huw Spiers has over 30 years of finance experience, with over 20 years since his first CFO role. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, having qualified in 1987 with BDO, London. He moved to Bermuda with KPMG in 1988, progressing to Senior Manager before, in 1993, becoming CFO of London & Overseas Freighters, a Nasdaq- and London Stock Exchange-quoted oil tanker company, through its IPO and eventual trade sale. In Ireland since 1998, Huw was CFO of technology companies Avatar Works, Xiam and PolarLake, the latter two subsequently sold to Qualcomm and Bloomberg, and was Chief Financial & Operating Officer of mTLD Top Level Domain Limited (which was acquired by the Company in 2010 and renamed Afilias Technologies Limited) from early 2009. Huw joined CryptoLogic, a Nasdaq-, Toronto- and London Stock Exchange-quoted online gaming company, as Group Head of Operations and Chief Financial Officer in 2010, where he executed a turnaround from a loss-making to a profitable company until its subsequent trade sale in 2012. Since 2012, Huw has performed various management and corporate finance consultancy roles with clients including PolarLake and Modern Plant, a distribution company. Huw rejoined the Group as Chief Financial Officer in 2014.
Scott Hemphill has over 20 years’ experience practicing corporate law, with a focus on commercial contracts, mergers and acquisitions and general technology and Internet-related issues. He joined Domain Bank, Inc., one of the Internet's first ICANN-accredited Domain Name Registrars and one of Afilias' founding members, as Vice President and General Counsel in 2000. Scott was highly involved in the creation of Afilias, serving in 2000 and 2001 as co-chair of the Group’s Policy Committee formed from representatives of Afilias' initial shareholders to help guide the creation of the .INFO Registry. Scott joined Afilias in 2003 as Vice President and General Counsel, and is responsible for the oversight of legal and policy issues for the Group.
Philipp Grabensee is a co-founder of Afilias and has been a director since inception. He has extensive experience in Domain Names and related areas and is the leader of Afilias’ worldwide government relations team. Philipp is a practising lawyer and is deputy General Counsel for the Group with responsibility for Europe and the Middle East. He was previously a member of the Names Council in the ICANN Domain Name Supporting Organisation. He served as Chairman of the Afilias board from 2003 to 2014.
Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer
Ram Mohan has over 20 years’ experience in technology, leadership and entrepreneurship within both publicly quoted and private companies. Previously he worked at companies including Infonautics Corp., First Data Corporation, Unisys Corporation and KPMG. Ram was a founder of the technology behind TurnTide, an anti-spam company acquired by Symantec (a provider of internet security) in July 2004. He has served on the ICANN board of directors since November 2008. After joining Afilias in July 2001 as Chief Technology Officer, Ram has overseen the key strategic, management and technology choices for the Group. He has also advised several governments on internet security and internet globalisation issues as part of Afilias’ ccTLD portfolio.
Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer
Roland LaPlante has over 30 years’ senior marketing experience, beginning with Procter and Gamble in brand management, and then successive positions at Heublein/Diageo, Citibank, McGraw-Hill, Providian and Xlibris (an online publisher). Since joining Afilias in 2001 as Chief Marketing Officer, he has overseen both corporate and product marketing for Afilias, including the launch of .INFO and the establishment of Afilias’ position in the current round of nTLDs. As the Group’s principal industry spokesperson, Roland is a sought after speaker on a variety of TLD issues and has helped position Afilias as a global Registry leader.
Vice President, Corporate Services
John Kane has nearly 20 years’ experience focusing on the online industry, specifically in the areas of Domain Name management, brand protection and Internet security. Before joining Afilias in 2008, John was Executive Vice President at Demand Media, a Content and Social Media company, from 2007 to 2008 and served as Vice President of Sales and President of its subsidiary, eNom, Inc. (an ICANN-accredited Registrar) from 2004 to 2008. He has also been an active participant in ICANN since its inception in 1998. John was previously a non-Executive board member of Afilias prior to his appointment with the Group. He oversees the continuing expansion of Afilias’ product offering.
Vice President, Sales
Steve Heflin has over 20 years’ experience in the online industry. In 1994, Heflin started one of the first dial-up internet service providers in southern Pennsylvania. In 1999, Steve co-founded Domain Bank, one of the first ICANN-accredited Registrars, and served as its President from 2002 to 2005. Steve joined Afilias as Vice President of Sales in 2006 and now manages a global sales team with offices in US, Europe, India and China and focuses on the full range of Afilias’ products.
Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Compliance
Steven Pack is a certified public accountant and chartered global management accountant. He has over 20 years’ experience in management roles at firms including Avis, American Forest Products, Louisiana Pacific, Mack Trucks and J.K. Lasser; and Deloitte & Touche. Prior to joining Afilias, Steven was a consultant at CFO Synergy, LLC serving as Chief Financial Officer for many small to mid-sized companies. He joined the Group in 2001 as Compliance Officer.