How Donuts Is Playing a Big Role in the New gTLD Era
With $100 million in VC funding and well over 100 new top-level domain names, Donuts has emerged to become the pre-eminent vendor in the new era of Internet domains.For much of the Internet's history, top-level domains (TLDs) were few in number, but that has changed over the course of the past year as new generic TLDs (gTLDs) have emerged. TLDs are the naming suffix for Internet addresses and include dot-com (as in eWEEK.com), which recently turned 30 years old. In 2012, there were only 22 TLDs; today there are more than 500, with new TLDs being added regularly. One of the biggest players in the gTLD space is Donuts Inc., which currently has 154 gTLDs available for general registration. Among the gTLDs operated by Donuts are .guru, .gallery, .technology, .careers and .email. While the name of the company might sound whimsical, Donuts is a serious and well-funded effort. To date, Donuts has raised more than $100 million in capital to fuel its gTLD efforts. Helping to lead Donuts is Jon Nevett, co-founder and executive vice president of corporate affairs. Nevett is a domain industry veteran, and prior to Donuts, he served as president of Domain Dimensions, senior vice president at Network Solutions, and chairman of the board of NameJet and Central Registry Solutions. "As more people become aware of the new top-level domains, we're in a great place to provide choices for them," Nevett told eWEEK. "I don't foresee any need for major fundraising in the immediate near future; we have the capacity and the sales and marketing in place."
For any new gTLD that becomes available, there is a staged process by which it is introduced into the market. The initial phase includes what is known as a sunrise period, where early access to registration is available for certain groups.