GMO Registry Receives Official Support from Tokyo Metropolitan Government to Apply for New gTLD, .tokyo

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ICANN Application to be submitted in January 2012

GMO Internet Group company and registry services provider, GMO Registry yesterday received official support from Tokyo Metropolitan Government to apply for and operate new generic Top Level Domain, .tokyo.
The Tokyo government invited applications for endorsement between July and September this year. GMO Registry applied during this period and won official endorsement following a rigorous evaluation. The evaluation considered financial condition, technical capability, marketing plans, other technical proposals and an outline of how the registry service provider could make a contribution to the city of Tokyo through the .tokyo extension.
GMO Registry believes that winning government support for its .tokyo application is evidence of the company's strong reputation in technology and proven track record.

The next step is for GMO Registry to begin preparing its ICANN application for submission in January 2012. The company will also continue planning a marketing strategy aimed at building the Tokyo brand both locally and internationally across industries including tourism, commerce, culture, and sport.    
ICANN requires applicants for geographical names under the new gTLD program to obtain endorsement of the relevant government or public authority as determined by each country’s national administration.

Background
There are currently 23 gTLDs in use worldwide (.com, .net, .and .org etc.). ICANN is now set to expand the existing generic Top Level Domain space and will begin accepting applications for new character strings in the first part of 2012. Many regional governments and corporate brands are expected to apply for geographic and brand extensions under the new gTLD program. On June 17 this year Tokyo Metropolitan Government unveiled its .tokyo policy and invited applications from registry service providers. Through the .tokyo extension, the government seeks to build a unified Tokyo identity among citizens and corporations while promoting the Tokyo brand both locally and internationally across industries including tourism, commerce, culture, and sport .

GMO Registry now begins preparing its ICANN application to operate the .tokyo extension. The new gTLD application window will open on January 12 and run for a period of three months. ICANN will then begin evaluating applications, a process that is expected to take at least six months. New gTLDs are likely to begin rolling out sometime after January 2013.

About GMO Registry
GMO Registry was established in 2009 to provide all-in registry solutions for new gTLDs including assistance with the application process, building and operation of registry systems, and marketing support. Global brands Canon and Hitachi have chosen to partner with GMO Registry to secure their respective brand names as TLDs and GMO Registry will also work with new registry DotRyukyu to apply for and operate the two Japanese geoTLDs .okinawa and .ryukyu.

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Leanne Hogben
GMO Internet
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