.Club Domains, LLC announced today they have won the rights to the new generic top level domain (gTLD) name .CLUB
The .CLUB name was obtained in the first private auction to be completed since ICANN began the new gTLD process.
The other applicants for .Club that participated in the private auction was Donuts and the Merchant Law Group LLP.
This appears to be the second new gTLD private auction that Donuts has lost.
The company also announced that it has exercised its option to complete a $7 million funding round, paving the way for .Club’s CEO Colin Campbell, the founder of Tucows and Hostopia, to bring his experience building and growing successful technology and Internet companies to this next frontier of Internet domains.
“We are thrilled to have won the first gTLD private auction and now be in a position to ensure that .CLUB is one of the first new generic domain names to come to market worldwide,” said Campbell. “We believe that very few new domain names carry the inherent marketing message and global recognition that the name ‘club’ represents. What .COM has done for companies, .CLUB will do for membership organizations of all sizes.” Campbell noted that .CLUB has consistently been among the top 20 new generic TLD’s across numerous pre-registration sites.
With the auction for the name now complete, subject to ICANN application approval, .CLUB will be among the first new generic TLD’s to come to market.
Domains like www.golf.club, www.poker.club, and www.book.club should hit the market in late 2013 or early 2014.
In addition to acting as the worldwide .CLUB registry, the company has plans to offer .CLUB domain name registrants a web and mobile social platform designed specifically for member engagement and management, making it easy for clubs of any kind to establish themselves on the internet.
“I created .Club Domains with the vision to help bring together people who have similar ideas, hobbies, or interests and create the easiest way to find, join or start a club on the internet,” added Campbell. “Names with the .CLUB extension will allow any kind of affinity group, hobbyists, sports enthusiasts and more to easily find or create a site where like-minded people can come together, get information and share interests.”
Campbell, the founder of Tucows and Hostopia, is a Toronto-born serial entrepreneur based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.