After the successful conclusion of our fifth auction last week, the Applicant Auction has now resolved contention for a total of 28 strings. More than 20 gTLD applicants have participated in our auctions, ranging from many smaller companies with only one gTLD application in contention to large, publicly traded portfolio applicants like TLDH and Demand Media.
All of our past auction participants would like to resolve future contention with Applicant Auctions as well. This is good news for applicants considering private auctions: It means that once they decide they are ready to go, an Applicant Auction can likely take place, without lengthy negotiations with their contenders. They can trust that the Applicant Auction is their safest and fastest way to resolve contention.
Our auctions held to date have been structured as simultaneous ascending clock second price auctions — the same auction style that ICANN chose for the Last Resort Auctions. We are also offering to organize Sealed Bid auctions or other options discussed in one of our previous blog posts, if applicants for a contention set request it. So far, there have been very few inquiries about Sealed Bid auctions - and our current auction design and process continues to get good reviews and positive feedback from past auction participants and new interested parties.
We will continue to schedule Applicant Auctions based on dates requested by applicants. The next Applicant Auction is currently planned for April 22nd.