Afilias Australia Pty Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Afilias plc, has been appointed to provide registry services for the .au domain from 1 July 2018 as part of auDA’s Registry Transformation Project.
Afilias was one of three providers shortlisted in a rigorous tender process, which attracted high calibre responses from across the globe.
auDA CEO Cameron Boardman said the tender process allowed auDA to update the technical specifications of the registry, to enhance security and stability provisions, to secure commitments to higher services levels and to test pricing.
Established in 2000, Afilias is the world’s second largest domain name registry provider with over 21 million names under management, including .org (more than 10 million domains) and .info (more than 6 million domains).
Afilias’ country code Top Level Domain experience includes support of India’s .in, which has grown to 2 million names. It has a track record of experience in smoothly transitioning registries, including the .org registry, with hundreds of registrars located around the globe, and with domain names associated with the top websites globally (e.g. wikipedia.org). Afilias also assisted with the establishment and testing of the current registry for .au in 2001.
Under the agreement, Afilias will set up a new Melbourne office with 20 local staff, including seasoned domain name professionals with more than 20 years global experience.
Technical specifications for the new registry contract were developed in consultation with auDA accredited registrars, registry providers and the wider Australian internet community.
The tender was run by a Tender Process Committee, which included a federal government representative, and a separate Tender Evaluation Committee assessed the bids.
To ensure the transparency of the process, the full Request for Tender - including the selection criteria and weightings - were published on the auDA website in September 2017.
“The new arrangements will support auDA’s Registry Transformation Project, which aims to cement community trust in the .au domain by ensuring the security, confidentiality, integrity and availability of data,” Mr Boardman said
“The project also promotes the development of data analytics capabilities within auDA to support compliance and policy development.”
The successful tenderer will begin engagement with registrars as early as this week, with access to information and test sites to be made available in coming months.