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Afilias Announces 3-Year Analysis of the .INFO Domain

On .INFO's Three-year Anniversary, the Domain Has Surpassed 1,500,000 Registrations.

DUBLIN, Ireland - 27 September 2004 - Afilias, a global provider of domain name registry services, today released a three year analysis of the .INFO domain in preparation for the third anniversary of live, real-time registrations on October 1. The domain, which is the most popular of the new TLDs that were launched in 2001, now has over 1,500,000 registrations, 71% of which are active sites, and over 460,000 dedicated INFO sites.

"This report illustrates .INFO's evolution from a "new" domain to the sixth largest domain on the Internet," said Roland LaPlante, Afilias' Chief Marketing Officer. ".INFO's intuitive appeal, supported by Afilias' reliable and fast technology, has fueled not just excellent registration volume, but also site usage comparable to .com and a burgeoning use by registrants in their advertising and marketing."

Highlights of the analysis report include:

  • .INFO total registrations passed the 1,500,000 mark in September 2004.
  • .INFO's quarter to quarter growth continues to outpace the industry's average of 2.5% and the year to year growth 7% . (Source: VeriSign Domain Name Industry Brief - Volume 1, Issue 3 - September 2004)
  • Europe remains the leading .INFO region, representing 54% of total registrations versus North America's 38%. Further, Europe now accounts for nearly 70% of the dedicated .INFO sites in use.
  • Over 70% of .INFOs are now active on the Internet, similar to .com (Source: VeriSign Domain Name Industry Brief - Volume 1, Issue 3 - September 2004) .INFO is now used for over 460,000 dedicated Web sites representing a broad cross section of businesses, organizations, causes, and individuals (a representative list can be found at http://www.info.info/directory)
  • .INFO IDNs have been successful. Since the launch of German script Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) in March 2004, over 18,000 IDNs have been registered. The average number of names per registrant was 3.8 domains, about twice the average of the .INFO portfolio.
  • Over 60% of those registering IDN names were brand new customers to the .INFO domain, illustrating that the introduction of IDNs presents gTLDs with the opportunity to attract new business to the domain.
  • .INFO enjoys a strong market penetration as registrars which sell .INFO domains represent 97% of the current domain market. (According to September 2004 data available at www.webhosting.info) .INFOs are now available nearly every place domains are sold.

Interestingly, companies such as the Franziskaner brewery in Germany have begun adopting .INFO in their advertising and marketing strategies. "Overall, we felt that a .info TLD was the ideal type of address to serve as an international entry point into our Web offering," said Volkmar Goebel, brand manager for Spaten and Franziskaner with the Munich-based Spaten-Löwenbräu Group.

Other companies such as SAP have taken the opportunity to use a .INFO address to compliment their brand name. The company, located in Walldorf, Germany, has been issuing their "SAP INFO" customer magazine to provide relevant company information packaged in a journalistic format in German and English for more than ten years. SAP recently migrated their SAPinfo.net URL, which was not well received by their readers, to SAP.INFO, which now records some 3 million page views and about 250,000 page visits per month.

In addition, the world's largest Web hosting company by number of active sites, 1&1 Internet, will change to a .INFO domain with their German language hosting portal. "A .INFO address is much more international than the .DE address we used before, so it will play an important role in our international expansion", says Andreas Gauger, CEO of 1&1 Internet AG. "Using the .INFO address will reduce our costs significantly, because we can address customers in Germany and Austria with the same marketing campaign. The positive image of the .INFO domain perfectly corresponds with our innovative and competitive webhosting products." With some 40% market share 1&1 is by far market leader in Germany.

.INFO's three year anniversary marks a milestone in the expansion of the Internet name space. .INFO has proven to be the most successful of the seven new TLDs due to it's large registration base, and high usage numbers, which closely mirror those of .com which has had more then 10 years to mature it's brand and market position. Furthermore, the introduction of IDNs within the TLD suggest that these new products may attract new customers, expanding the market for .INFO domains deeper into non-English speaking parts of the world.

About Afilias
Afilias, a fully integrated global provider of domain name registry services, maintains international headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, sales offices in London, England and Düsseldorf, Germany, sales and operational facilities in Toronto, and administrative offices in the U.S. near Philadelphia, PA. Afilias provides a full range of registry services leveraging proven technology that is fast, reliable and secure. Afilias was formed in September of 2000 and was the first new gTLD operator selected by ICANN in November of 2000 to launch a new registry system using a thick registry model based on the new EPP (extensible provisioning protocol) standard.