Hong Kong, 11 July 2007 — DotAsia, the registry operator of the “.Asia” Internet domain, announced today the launch of the .Asia Pioneer Domains Program, offering businesses and entrepreneurs the ultimate first-mover advantage for e-commerce in Asia. DotAsia is the first global “top-level domain” (TLD) headquartered in Asia, and the Pioneer Domains Program marks the first time ever a domain registry is opening its doors for domains based on the quality of proposals received for any domain name of choice.
Edmon Chung, CEO at DotAsia explains, “The .Asia Pioneer Domains Program opens a new frontier on the Internet for the region, and marks an important milestone in the emergence of Asia as a global leader in digital marketing. We believe that this is a golden opportunity for entrepreneurs and businesses to acquire prime cyber real estate in Asia and for businesses to get on the fast track for attracting the world’s largest and fastest-growing market.”
Vint Cerf, father of the Internet and Chairman of ICANN comments, "DotAsia has worked hard to bring its .Asia top level domain name into operation. They have been careful to keep interested parties informed and to think through the 'landrush' period. The Pioneer Domains Program will be a useful benchmark for other new TLD operators to take into account."
The Pioneer Domains Program was conceived to encourage visionaries from all fields to design innovative and relevant websites with the best .Asia domains. Applicants are invited to submit a brief proposal for the domain of their choice, and measures are in place to protect the rights of others and curb abusive registrations. This concept marks a departure from the conventional first-come-first-served allocation model to directly motivate the adoption and positive usage of the domain names. The best ideas win the right to operate the best .Asia domains.
This year, the Asia Digital Marketing Association (ADMA) announced that 2007 is the year that the balance tips, with Asia taking the lead in key aspects of the global digital marketing mix. The launch of .Asia in this same year will help the Internet community take advantage of the emerging Asia Internet marketplace, while the .Asia Pioneer Domains Program will offer the opportunity for businesses and entrepreneurs to establish their presence in Asia with the most relevant domain name on the Internet. The prime cyber real estate DotAsia is offering from the Pioneer Domains Program represents millions of dollars in value of domain names.
“We are very excited about the Pioneer Domains Program because it provides great value to businesses in the region. At the same time, it creates incentive for the adoption of the .Asia domain by prominent entrepreneurs and brands” adds Edmon Chung. “It is almost like a business plan contest where everyone wins.”
Good domain names have become prime cyber real estate in the booming cyberspace market. Value of domain names regained fervour and have risen to staggering heights from the days of the Internet bubble when tom.com was sold for US$2.5 million, in comparison to diamonds.com going for US$7.5 million in 2006. Earlier this year, Poker.com auctioned out for more than US$27million. At the height of the bubble, business.com was acquired at US$7.5 million. Today, that same domain name is estimated to be worth US$300-400million.
The value of a domain name is a function of the name itself and the potential traffic it draws. Today, Asia is already by far the largest online population with 400 million Internet users. Yet this represents only 10% of the Asia market. According to statistics on alexa.com, traffic originating from Asia has also surpassed that of the US and Europe – this includes traffic for the Global Top 10 websites, such as MSN, Google and Yahoo.
The .Asia Pioneer Domains Program is open to individual entrepreneurs, corporations, global brands and community organisations. DotAsia is accepting applications starting today through the Pioneer Domains Program website: http://pioneer.domains.asia. Deadline for applications is August 31, 2007. Imagine what entrepreneurs can dream up with “www.music.asia” or “www.trade.asia”! Envision how domains like “sms.asia”, “health.asia” or “sports.asia” can help businesses drive traffic to their online channels and add prestige to their core brands.
The DotAsia Organisation is a not-for-profit community-based organisation incorporated in Hong Kong with a focused mission to operate the .Asia Registry. It is the sponsoring organization and registry operator for the .Asia sponsored generic top level domain. The DotAsia Organisation has a purposeful mandate to direct surplus proceeds to initiatives that benefit the community in the region, such as projects to bridge the digital divide and regional research development projects.
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