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Donuts Raises $100M-Plus To Deliver ‘Dot-Anything-You-Want’ Domain Names

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Donuts Raises $100M-Plus To Deliver ‘Dot-Anything-You-Want’ Domain Names

Post by Alex on Tue 05 Jun 2012, 11:14 am

By Lora Kolodny on 5th June 2012

Donuts has raised more than $100 million in a mammoth Series A round, not to make crispy, dunk-able diet killers, but to become a registry for generic top-level domains or “gTLDs,” a new type of unique, online identifier, VentureWire has learned.

The round was led by Austin Ventures and joined by Adams Street Partners, Emergence Capital, TL Ventures, Generation Partners, Stahurricane (founder and Chief Executive Paul Stahura’s own venture fund) and a number of angels and other funds.

Web industry associations and regulators limit the number of top level domain names to 22 types today, including “.com,” “.edu” and “.net.” Stahura says businesses and bloggers alike should be able to secure memorable addresses more affordably when the gTLDs become available.

“Right now it’s difficult to find a good name, a memorable name in ‘.com,’” he said. “We will provide specificity and choice. If you’re a doctor, let’s say, you could get ‘.doctor.’ If you have a small cleaning business you might get ‘.cleaning.’”

Chief marketing officer of Donuts, Mason Cole, pointed out that in one recent domain name sale, PersonalLoans.com sold for $1 million. “That’s a lot to spend on a ‘used’ name,” he said, “What if the buyer had access to ‘personal.loans’ instead?”

Donuts applied to secure and operate 307 different new domains, none of which are phrases that are geographic (like “.nyc”) or trademarked (like “.microsoft”), Stahura reports.

It is not clear who the company will be in contention with to ,,,

Read the full story at The Wall Street Journal


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