This is an interview with Cyril Fremont, the first French entrepreneur to have acquired a new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD).
We long waited for innovation in the new gTLD industry and reading between the lines of this interview, one will understand that the reason behind this acquisition is “not” to sell domain names — the way registries do it in 2018.
If “.Best” domains remain open to all here, this registry is planning to create innovative projects that will be launched in the near future with some possibly big surprises.
Jean Guillon: Why acquire the .Best new gTLD and no other?
Cyril Fremont: The title says it all, “it’s the best.” The .Best TLD is one of the few that adds value to the domain name. It is simple: people are always looking for the best. Everyone wants the best and there are more than 200 million best-related searches every month.
Jean Guillon: How will the .Best strategy be different from other TLDs?
Cyril Fremont: There will be two steps in our new .Best strategy:
1) Lower the price tag for registrars and users. Today, “.Best” domain names are still considered as Premiums and they are too expensive — so we will quickly change that.
2) We want the .Best new gTLD to be part of a global strategy that will benefit the internet community.
Jean Guillon: OK Cyril, that’s the official speech but now, what’s the truth?
Cyril Fremont: lol, OK, challenge me.
Jean Guillon: What’s the relation between the .Best new gTLD that you have just acquired and the ICO (Initial Coin Offering) that I just heard about?
Cyril Fremont: We are creating a new social network where users will be rewarded in our BESTCOIN cryptocurrency to elect the Best of everything. The business model is very simple: Get paid to review.
Jean Guillon: How “.Best” domain names become an innovation in such a project?
Cyril Fremont: The first innovation is that each user will have their own domain name and will be responsible for their published content. All data and reviews will be fully decentralized in users websites (to fully comply with GDPR).
The other innovation is that contributors will be rewarded in our CryptoCurrency (BESTCOIN) for their content.
And the Best innovation for the community is that we will change the game between buyers and sellers. Buying with a .Best domain will give you benefits because of the counter-power. Imagine you book a hotel with a .best email and get a free upgrade. This is what we are building.
Jean Guillon: OK, this is one big project but you said that more are coming so what’s your vision? Isn’t the .Best registry a tool to create a more global project for the community?
Cyril Fremont: that’s exactly what it is Jean, our ambition is to create massive projects for consumers and not only focus on selling domain names through registrars the classic way.
As a registry in 2018, you need to think outside the box. The new gtld first mover advantage has gone.
While it is true that domain registrars are key in the domain names selling process, registries need to help them: registries need to bring the domain buyers to registrars.
All the projects that we are working on add a real value to the Internet community and so by ricochet as French say, to the global ICANN ecosystem: registrars, backend, escrow.
Plus, if you look at the internet economy, you will see that the influencers are actually driving the traffic. Look at Instagram: +1Billion users! How many active new gtlds domains at that time? 23 Millions domains. That’s great but this is not our target. You have to be more customer-centric to be successful. You have to put the influencers at the center of all your registry strategies and economy.
Jean Guillon: OK, I understand what’s your vision but can we expect technical innovation?
Cyril Fremont: Yes but we just finalized the .Best acquisition so I can’t tell more for the time being. I give you rendezvous at the NAMESCON 2019 in Vegas.
Jean Guillon: Who is .Best: can you tell me more about the team?
Cyril Fremont: Premlead is the major shareholder and is helped by a team of investors that supported not only this first acquisition but also the next. Moreover, Premlead was already an active buyer of domain names including .Best premium names such as hotels.best, restaurants.best, …
Jean Guillon: Is China an objective?
Cyril Fremont: In one word: it is 60% of the new gtld market.
Jean Guillon: I heard about “big numbers” and even the crazy number of 100 Million!
Cyril Fremont: Well, this number is indeed two objectives of us.
1) First, we just launched an ICO (www.coin.best) where we started selling our crypto token in presales for $100 Million USD.
2) Secondly, we have this target of creating a Best social network of 100M users by 2022.
Jean Guillon: I must admit that I fell from my chair when I heard about this since the .COM registry has just more than 134,000,000 domains installed and it took quite some years to achieve this. Can you tell me more about his?
Cyril Fremont: First, considering a social network means a lot of users. Look at Instagram and Facebook : we are not talking about 100 Million, they have +1 Billion users each. Do you understand the overall idea behind this? And by the way, the ex-Head of Facebook that drove the fast growth of the social network for 6 years just joined us as an advisor.
Jean Guillon: the .Best registry in the hands of a French person, isn’t this a little bit strange?
Cyril Fremont: Totally! (lol) but domain names ending in “.Best” are not for French, it’s a word used worldwide. Best is part of the 250 most used terms in the world. Also, the French history is linked to excellency: luxury, beauty, aerospace, … In most industries, French are the Best and aren’t we the new soccer world champions?
Jean Guillon: Last question, do you have plans to acquire other new gTLD?
Cyril Fremont: This is your Best question jean. You can say it to all registries: If any one of them would like to resell, come to us, speak to us. We can guarantee them the Best proposal!
Jean Guillon: Sorry, I have one more last question. How much did it cost you to acquire the .Best new gTLD?
Cyril Fremont: As said, you don’t count for the Best!
Written by Jean Guillon, New generic Top-Level Domains’ specialist