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Africa covered in 100 new generic TLDs

January 23, 2014 • Online

Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) (Image source: File)

Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) (Image source: File)

ICANN’s Generic Domains Division today announced that the number of new generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) delegated into the Internet’s Root Zone has topped 100. Delegation is one of the final steps before the Registries that control the domains may begin accepting registrations for names that will use the new gTLDs.

“There are now almost five times more generic Top-Level Domains than there were only a few months ago and that translates to greater consumer choice,” said Akram Atallah, President of ICANN’s Global Domains Division. “We are as eager as everyone else to see what type of innovation these new Domains will usher into the online world.”

One such choice, .Africa (dot Africa), continues to generate interest from businesses across the continent.

In September 2013, Ope Odusan, MD at Africa.com Domains, said in the first few weeks since the company started offering domains, trademark and brand owners have quickly picked up their domains including twitter.africa.com, starbucks.africa.com, ibm.africa.com, evian.africa.com, standardbank.africa.com, lego.africa.com, marksandspencer.africa.com, emirates.africa.com, philips.africa.com, miele.africa.com.

This massive expansion of the Domain Name System (DNS) represents one of the greatest changes to the Internet since its inception.

“This is an historic milestone for ICANN’s New gTLD Program and the Internet as a whole,” said Christine Willett, Vice President of gTLD Operations. “The year ahead will be defined by new opportunities in a vastly expanding online landscape.”

In addition to the new delegations, 200 Registry Agreements (RA) have been signed by new gTLD applicants. Signing an agreement allows applicants to move onto the final stages of the Program and prepare for delegation into the DNS.

ICANN will continue to delegate new generic Top-Level Domains on a regular basis.

In July 2013 the internet governing body ruled that the ZA Central Registry (ZACR) bid for dotAfrica had passed “Initial Evaluation”.

“The valued support of the African Union Commission “AUC” has been a key success factor. Our bid for dotAfrica could not have made it this far without the support and encouragement of the AUC,” said dotAfrica Steering Committee Chair Mohammed El Bashir at the time.

Chris Tredger – Online Editor

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