US registry Neustar has bought .CO Internet, which manages .co domain names, for around $109 million.
The .co extension was the country-code top-level domain for Colombia until 2010, when it re-branded as a generic top-level domain (gTLD), targeting small businesses in particular.
Since then .CO Internet has worked closely with Neustar, which provides back-end registry support to the company. There are now 1.6 million .co domains.
Lisa Hook, Neustar chief executive, said .CO Internet is a “natural fit for us, given our successful partnership over the past four years and our domain name expertise”.
In a blog post announcing the deal on March 20, .CO Internet chief executive Juan Diego Calle described the move as “historic”.
“I couldn’t be more proud to share this news or more excited about what the future holds in store for .CO. While this announcement may come as a surprise to some, we’ve spent the last year thoughtfully planning our long-term growth strategy.”
Neustar operates the .biz and .us TLDs and is supporting nearly 350 new gTLDs. The company itself applied for .neustar.
This article was first published on 21 March 2014 in World IP Review
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