ICANN’s drive to attract a broader global audience a key focus area of its 61st public meeting

The ZA Central Registry (ZACR) NPC, parent company to Registry Africa, will be traveling to San Juan, Puerto Rico for the 61st public meeting of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN).

This year’s six-day meeting will focus on, inter alia, outreach, capacity building and showcasing ICANN’s work as leaders in Domain Name Systems, Registry and Registrar Policy Development, Law Enforcement and ancillary matters that are critical to the functioning of the Internet “ICANN 61 represents an interesting global platform to present the dotAfrica (.africa) journey given its mix of creative policy, regulatory, technical and marketing gurus,” says Lucky Masilela, CEO of Registry Africa.

ZACR trading as Registry Africa was given the administrative right to manage the .africa geographic Top Level Domain (gTLD) by ICANN in February last year. “In a single stroke, the commercial launch of .africa could see ICANN’s potential market and area of influence grow by over a billion human beings now having access to their  own African digital space for the very first time,” said Mr Masilela.

Since launch, the .africa team has traversed the length and breadth of Africa promoting Africa’s own home on the web, including an awareness and visibility campaign that culminated in a trek to the highest peak of Mount Kilimanjaro with the .africa flag firmly in hand.

The latter was handed over to the .africa Team at the African Union (AU) headquarters in Ethiopia In July 2017 and has since been returned to its AU spiritual home in Addis Ababa. The .africa domain name is capturing the heart and soul of young African entrepreneurs who are highly-motivated by the promise of the web.

It’s now Puerto Rico’s turn to receive the message of Africa’s rebirth through world class ICT initiatives like the .africa gTLD. “These were already identified as key to Africa’s growth by the OR Tambo and Abuja Declarations of the 1990s,” commented Mr Masilela.

“There are immense .africa reseller opportunities and we’re very keen to get that message out at ICANN61,” said Mr Masilela. Elaborating, Mr Masilela outlined four reasons why the .africa gTLD is so good for African and global business.

Economies today run on creativity and original thinking just as economies yesterday ran on coal and steam. The availability of a new space within which to register creative combinations of brand names, payoff lines and more is the spark that will ignite new online and offline business opportunities.

Great cities and countries are branding themselves and the greatest continents should too. dotAfrica is the perfect platform to promote the one place on earth that still boasts the widest selection of natural wonders, coupled with the best promise of future growth.

The first step in selling anything from continents to cucumbers is customers knowing where to go. What could be more convenient, and more obvious, to the global online marketplace that the simple and easy-to-remember .africa gTLD? Yes, Africa is open for business, and .africa is our storefront.

The well-run .africa gTLD is an African homegrown technical and marketing success story of which all Africans can be justly proud. Because of this, .africa creates confidence in prospective purchasers of African products and services that make use of the new domain, and this can only be good for our continental economy.

Finally, the fact that .africa is a short, simple and easy to remember domain name extension in an increasingly cluttered cyberspace is a benefit in itself. Africa’s growing reputation as a place where deals are being made and economies are on the up and up means there are many positive implications to being associated with the Bright Continent.

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