One and two-character domain names to become available under '.fr'

France

AFNIC, the organisation responsible for operating the ‘.fr’ country-code top-level domain (ccTLD) for France, has announced that it will make available the registration of one and two-character domain names under ‘.fr’ from December 8 2014 in both numerical and alphabetical characters, or a combination of the two.

The release of the one and two-character domain names will be a phased launch:

  • Sunrise period (running from December 8 2014 to February 9 2015) - during the sunrise period, AFNIC will accept applications for one and two-character domain names from the following entities:

    • owners of trademarks registered before July 9 2012 - only holders of French trademarks, Community trademarks or international trademarks affording protection in France will be allowed to participate in the sunrise period;

    • French local government authorities;

    • French companies formed before July 9 2012; and

    • individuals seeking to protect their surnames.

      Sunrise domain name applications will be treated on a first-come, first-served basis by AFNIC.

  • Landrush period (running from February 16 to March 16 2015) - during the landrush period, any entity may submit an application for any of the one and two-character domain names that was not registered during the sunrise period.

    During the landrush, AFNIC will apply a sliding scale of fees.  These are as follows:

    • applications submitted during week one of landrush: €15,000.

    • applications submitted during week two of landrush: €10,000.

    • applications submitted during week three of landrush: €5,000.

    • applications submitted during week four of landrush: €100.

      All applications will be treated by AFNIC on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • General availability starting on March 17 2015 - registration will be open to everyone for those domain names that were not registered during the sunrise and landrush phases. As for the sunrise and landrush periods, applications for domain names during general availability will be treated on a first-come, first-served basis.

    One and two-character domain names in the other ccTLDs within the French namespace, namely ‘.re’ (Reunion Island), ‘.yt’ (Mayotte), ‘.wf’ (Wallis and Futuna), ‘.tf’ (French Southern Territories) and ‘.pm’ (Saint-Pierre and Miquelon), are not being made available for the moment.

David Taylor, Daniel Madden and Sean Kelly, Hogan Lovells LLP, Paris

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