On 22 October 2014, an Auction conducted by ICANN’s authorized Auction service provider, Power Auctions LLC, was held to resolve string contention sets for three new generic Top-level Domain (gTLD) strings; SALON, SPOT, and REALTY.
String contention occurs when ICANN receives more than one application for the same or a confusingly similar gTLD. The applicants for these strings were unable to resolve the contention sets among themselves, and thus proceeded to an auction, which is the method of last resort to resolve string contention sets as prescribed in Module 4 of the Applicant Guidebook. Subject to payment of the Winning Price and meeting all other criteria for eligibility, the winner will begin the contracting process to sign a Registry Agreement to operate the respective gTLD.
“We continue to see contentions being resolved at a steady pace.” Said Akram Atallah, President of ICANN’s Global Domains Division. “Since last month we have seen 20 contention sets resolved, 3 via ICANN auctions, 1 via Community Priority Evaluation and 16 through self-resolution between applicants.”
Four applicants for SALON participated in the Auction. Outer Orchard, LLC prevailed in the Auction with the winning price of $5,100,575.
Three applicants for SPOT participated in the Auction. Amazon EU S.à r.l. prevailed in the Auction with the winning price of $2,200,000.
Two applicants for REALTY participated in the Auction. Fegistry, LLC prevailed in the Auction with the winning price of $5,588,888.
All proceeds from the Auction are being segregated from use until the Board determines a plan for the appropriate use of the funds through consultation with the community. A detailed summary of the Auction proceeds and costs through the September 2014 Auction is available here, and will be updated with the latest information at the end of each month.
Additional bidding information is available in the Auction Reports which can be found on Auction Results page within the New gTLD Microsite.
Subsequent auctions are scheduled [PDF, 250 KB] to occur on a monthly basis throughout 2014 and into early 2015. The auction events are intended to resolve multiple contention sets simultaneously.