[Governance] Acquisition of Afilias by Donuts

Ayden Férdeline ayden at ferdeline.com
Fri Nov 20 06:09:33 EST 2020

Thanks Parminder,

On the revolving door point - I have also noticed that many former ICANN execs are now working at companies in the domain name space, and others have pointed this out as well. But I don't see why there would be anything wrong with that unless, for example, they made decisions prior to leaving ICANN purely for the benefit of their post-ICANN careers and against the best interests of the ICANN community. If you (or anyone else) are able to provide verifiable evidence of such, I think there would be considerable media interest in such a story...

Best wishes,

Ayden Férdeline

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐ Original Message ‐‐‐‐‐‐‐
On Friday, November 20th, 2020 at 05:32, parminder via Governance <governance at lists.igcaucus.org> wrote:

> I understand all that this is being directed by a murky mafia behind the scene, of which we got some sightings during the .org saga. This mafia both consists of ex-CANNers and is in cahoots with existing people in ICANN... This is why revolving doors is such a bad word in policy and governance circles.... But wasnt the multistakeholderism version practised by ICANN always a formalisation and white-washing of revolving doors... parminder
> On 20/11/20 4:01 AM, Ayden Férdeline via Governance wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> Just flagging this press release that says Afilias has been acquired by Donuts:
>> https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/donuts-inc-to-acquire-afilias-inc-301177508.html
>> This means that Donuts now owns over 450 generic top-level domains (out of a total of 1,200). The (continued) consolidation in the domain name industry is something that civil society might want to track. I am not sure if this sale is problematic from a competition perspective (though that is my gut reaction), but it is significant nonetheless.
>> Donuts is owned by private equity firm Abry Partners, connected to former ICANN CEO Fadi Chehade.
>> Afilias, which Donuts is now acquiring, is paid roughly $20 million a year by the Public Interest Registry to offer backend services. Late last year another Fadi Chehade-connected entity, Ethos Capital, attempted to acquire the Public Interest Registry.
>> Best wishes,
>> Ayden Férdeline
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