THE MISSION AND PURPOSE OF THE NEW RESTRICTED .VOLVO gTLD IS TO BENEFIT INTERNET USERS BY ENSURING INCREASED TRUST AND CONFIDENCE THROUGH THE ELIMINATION OF USER CONFUSION AND ASSURANCE OF BRAND AUTHENTICITY. The new .volvo gTLD will operate as a restricted registry, in which Volvo Holding... Read more
THE MISSION AND PURPOSE OF THE NEW RESTRICTED .VOLVO gTLD IS TO BENEFIT INTERNET USERS BY ENSURING INCREASED TRUST AND CONFIDENCE THROUGH THE ELIMINATION OF USER CONFUSION AND ASSURANCE OF BRAND AUTHENTICITY.
The new .volvo gTLD will operate as a restricted registry, in which Volvo Holding Sverige Aktiebolag (Volvo) can create and control domain spaces that promote the Volvo brand's identity and authenticity. In this regard, the .volvo gTLD will provide an authoritative internet space for Volvo and its affiliates to provide information, services and resources to customers and other target groups in a way that promotes trust, accessibility and utility. Second and third level domains can then be utilised for new marketing possibilities, with internet users assured of brand authenticity.
Volvo is a company, within the Volvo Group, which is wholly owned by AB Volvo (publ.). Volvo owns and manages movable goods for the Volvo Group and will be responsible for the management and operations of the .volvo domain space. Established in 1927, the Volvo Group provides transportation related products and services with a focus on quality, safety and environmental care. Since its establishment, the Volvo Group has developed to become a major global player. Today, the Volvo Group is one of the world's largest manufacturers of transport trucks, buses and construction equipment, drive systems for marine and industrial applications and aerospace components. Based in Sweden, the Volvo Group employs over 100,000 people with production facilities in 19 countries and operations in over 180 countries such as Sweden, US, France, China and Japan. Listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange, the Volvo Group has an established and strong presence in Western Europe, North America and South America. Following its acquisitions of the Japanese truck manufacturer UD Trucks and the Chinese wheel loader manufacturer Lingong, the Volvo Group now also has a significant industrial presence in Asia. The Volvo Group's various operations are organised to deliver the greatest possible focus on customers and their needs, and to exploit and harness the Group's far-reaching and shared resources in the best possible way. In this regard, customer trust and continuous innovation are paramount considerations in Volvo's application for the .volvo gTLD.
Business activities are increasingly conducted over the internet, allowing for greater levels of interaction between businesses and customers. As a result, both businesses and end users benefit from ease of interaction and a wider range of choices with lower transaction costs. However, recent developments in this area have increased the potential for exposure for both businesses and internet users to an increase in the incidents of criminal activities over the internet, including data breach, identify theft, hacking and phishing. These sophisticated criminal activities can cause financial and non-financial loss as well as reputational damage for businesses as internet users lose consumer confidence and trust with the businesses targeted by such criminal activities, as well as the internet as a whole. The .volvo gTLD will facilitate greater trust and assurance from internet users wishing to connect and do business with Volvo Group online, whilst still allowing for convenient and efficient interaction between the parties.
Volvo's mission and purpose for the proposed new gTLD share common goals with ICANN's initiatives to promote public interest. Volvo is committed to contributing towards achieving the outcome of certain initiatives in line with ICANN's Affirmation of Commitments, which include:
- consumer trust: the .volvo gTLD registry will be operated in a centralised manner with a restrictive registration policy. Registration of domain names will only be available to Volvo Group and its affiliate entities, at this stage, which will provide added consumer trust that .volvo domain names are trustworthy. As .volvo domain names are subject to registration standards, policies and procedures under Volvo's control, this eliminates the possibility of malicious conduct within the .volvo domain space;
- competition: the proposed new gTLD is not intended to instigate competition and consumer choice at the level of registration of domain names among prospective registrants. Instead it is anticipated to contribute to ICANN's initiatives to promote public interest through its operation focused on promoting consumer trust. Increased trust in the .volvo gTLD will drive existing and new top level domain (TLD) registry operators to make improvements in mechanisms to improve consumer trust of their TLDs; and
- consumer choice: the proposed new gTLD will enable user-driven improvements and innovations assisting Volvo's marketing efforts through its ability to create new second and third level domain names on demand. These names will provide the internet users with more choices for interacting with Volvo. As Volvo has effective control over the registration and use of domain names under the .volvo domain space, this will also contribute towards general service innovations on the internet.
Given the restricted nature of the .volvo gTLD, the projected number of registration is likely to be limited. It is anticipated that between 5 and 500 domain names will be registered in the first few years. However, the number of registrations is likely to increase as Volvo develops and implements new services and marketing campaigns for the new gTLD.
Volvo intends to create relevant domain names for use including product, services or geographic names in the second or third level domain names. In accordance with registration policy and the proposed measures for protection of geographic names as outlined in response to Question 22, Volvo will use geographic names to localise websites in the 140 countries and territories in which it operates. The use of geographic names is intended to:
- connect internet users with relevant information as applicable to the territory; and
- comply with required rules and regulations in the national territory.
The Volvo brand is a well-recognised global brand. Volvo's affiliate, Volvo Trademark Holding AB, holds an extensive trademark portfolio with over 600 "Volvo" trademark registrations in 164 countries and territories for the following categories such as trucks, buses, construction equipment, cars, drive systems for marine and industrial applications and aerospace components, as well as parts for aforementioned goods (Class 12) and logistics solutions (Class 39). Volvo Trademark Holding AB also holds about 1200 trademark registrations for marks containing the "Volvo" mark for the same classes. Volvo Trademark Holding AB has issued an exclusive licence to AB Volvo (publ.) and its affiliates to use the "Volvo" trademark in internet domain names operated by the Volvo Group. Volvo Holding Sverige AB will operate the .volvo gTLD on behalf of its parent company AB Volvo (publ.).
Further, Volvo and its affiliates have an extensive domain name portfolio. The Volvo Group has over 200 existing domain names with an exact match to the applied-for .volvo string and its "Volvo" trademark in spaces including volvo.com, volvo.eu and volvo.jp. The Volvo Group also holds over 400 existing domain names containing the "Volvo" trademark.
Volvo believes that the .volvo gTLD is unlikely to cause confusion with either a generic term or any existing TLDs. Volvo trademarks are a leading global brand with significant reputation in countries all around the world. The Volvo Group has used the term "Volvo" in conjunction with its transportation related products and services since its establishment over 80 years ago and has associated the Group's "Volvo" brand with the its core values on quality, safety and environmental care. As such, the Volvo brand is a well-reputable brand worldwide. ×