FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. and BEIJING, Dec. 5, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- .CLUB Domains announced today that China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has granted a license to .CLUB's Beijing based wholly foreign-owned entity (WFOE) company, making it among the very first foreign registries of a new gTLD (generic top-level domain) to be approved by the Chinese government. Previously, only Verisign (.COM, .NET) had been awarded approval as a non-Chinese registry.
China accounts for more than 42.5% of all new gTLD registrations or more than 11 million new domain name registrations, according to independent domain industry statistician ntldstats.com - making it one of the world's most influential markets for the Internet domain industry. .CLUB, which is currently a best-selling and the most used new domain extension on the Internet today, has seen significant growth in registrations from domain investors in China with more than 400,000 of its domains having been registered there and more than US$2 Million in .CLUB premium name sales made to Chinese investors. Now, with one of only five formal government licenses for foreign domains, .CLUB names will be eligible for ICP (Internet Content Provider) numbers. An ICP number is required for every website hosted in mainland China.
The Internet in China has always been highly regulated, which deters many Western businesses from entering the market. However, with an extremely large, growing and vibrant online ecosystem in China, the opportunity exists for those companies willing and able to comply with China's regulations. .CLUB was one of the first foreign registries to apply for approval in 2015 and has worked diligently to meet all requirements leading to the license now being granted. This also required the technical assistance of backend service provider partners Neustar in the United States and ZDNS in China, and consulting advice from Allegravita in China and the U.S. ZDNS is an important partner and provides a dual registry backend solution.
"The Chinese market is extremely important to us, and we've worked very hard at understanding how the regulatory system there works and how we can work with the government as it evolves," said Colin Campbell, founder and CEO of .CLUB Domains. "We're very proud to be among the first foreign domain name registries approved. While we've already enjoyed some success in China, we now look forward to expanding the reach and popularity of .CLUB to the many businesses and entrepreneurs developing their online presence in China. Being an approved registry opens the door to great expansion for us in the Chinese market."
Why .CLUB in China?
The word "Club" in English is widely used and recognized in China by existing clubs and small businesses, making .CLUB a logical and meaningful domain extension. With over 140 million .COM and .NET names and nearly 20 million .CN names already registered businesses looking for good, brandable names need new choices such as .CLUB. Whether for existing clubs and organizations, retail loyalty programs, sports clubs, football, basketball, tennis, golf, running and swimming clubs, fan clubs, as well as entertainment clubs such as nightclubs and KTV clubs, a .CLUB web address is ideal for any business creating a community.
As part of the licensing process, .CLUB has established a dedicated office and team in Beijing, and works closely with Chinese domain name registrars such as Aliyun Wanwang (Alibaba), West.cn, EJEE, Xinnet, and others. In addition to .CLUB, the registries for .XYZ and .VIP were also granted their licenses.
About .Club Domains, LLC
Led by Internet entrepreneur Colin Campbell, whose prior successes include Tucows Interactive and Hostopia.com, .Club Domains, LLC was formed for the purpose of becoming the .CLUB gTLD registry. The company also launched Startup.club to support entrepreneurs building businesses around a .CLUB domain name. With more than 870,000 domain names sold to date .CLUB leads the pack of new domain extensions in premium sales and usage. More information and links to register .CLUB domains are available now at http://www.get.club.
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SOURCE .Club Domains, LLC