Thomas K Thomas

Directi in race for 31 generic domain names

Thomas K Thomas New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018

Soon, Web site extension names such as .web, .hotel, .bank and .news could be owned by an Indian firm. Mumbai-based Directi has invested nearly $30 million to apply for 31 generic strings.

This has been made possible because the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the global agency that manages Internet-related tasks, had started accepting applications to manage new top-level domains — names that appear at the end of Web site addresses such as .com and .org. The last date for applying was Thursday.

Internet services company Net4India has also applied for 20 domain names on behalf of its clients. While Directi plans to own the domain names for which it has applied, Net4India has applied on behalf of corporate houses who want to use the opportunity to create their own branding on the Internet.

Currently, ICANN allows domain names only in 23 categories such as .edu, .org or .in but now the floodgates have been opened. But to get this extension the applicant entities, like Directi, have had to make a detailed presentation to ICANN on what it plans to do with the domain.

“We have been working at this project for over a year and a half and also have put in place a sizeable team. With 31 applications, I think we will be number one applicant in Asia and among the top 4 or 5 globally,” Mr Bhavin Turakhia, Founder and CEO at Directi, told Business Line.

Globally, about 2,000 entities are understood to have applied for domain names. If there are multiple applicants for the same domain names then ICANN will hold an auction. “We expect big competition for .web domain. We hope to convert most of our applications to a win as this presents a huge opportunity for us,” Mr Turakhia said. Directi has applied for vertical domain names also such as .music and .app. If it wins these strings then globally it will be the sole registry for these domain names.

>tkt@thehindu.co.in

Published on May 31, 2012

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