On April 1, 2019 Donuts announced that it will be changing standard prices for the majority of its TLDs. The changes will go into effect October 1, 2019. Until that time all registered domains may be renewed for up to 10 years at their current renewal price.
Of the 241 Donuts TLDs, 16 will remain unchanged while 220 will increase in price between 6% and 9%. The remaining 5 have been changed to align with other competing TLDs in the market, including a 35% price reduction to .GROUP. It is not clear what happens to the other 4 extensions and what these extensions are.
In total, the average increase is just under 7% and will only affect standard price domains, not premiums.
Andee Hill, that has now left Donuts, said in 2017 (after Uniregistry had increased prices for up to 3,000%) “we have no plans to increase prices for existing registrants — this is not part of our business plan”.
So Donuts lied in 2017 and is now increasing renewals to 220 domain extensions.
Andee also said that “We voluntarily entered into agreements with our registrars that dramatically limits our ability to increase prices for existing registrants.”
Is the Donuts their business plan changing every year? What happened to the registrar agreements? Did they really exist?
Maybe Donuts would like to share with us registrants when and how their business plan changed and what happened to that agreements?
It doesn’t really come as a surprise that a registry that is allowed by ICANN to increase prices without any control lied to its customers but I would still like to hear a comment from them.
(Andee Hill is now registrars services and engagement programs director at ICANN.)