18(a) Describe the mission/purpose of your proposed gTLD
|gTLD||Full Legal Name||Detail|
|.sncf||Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Francais S N C F||View|
The mission and purpose of the new restricted .sncf gTLD is to benefit internet users by ensuring increased trust, convenience and utility.
The .sncf gTLD will create a new generation gTLD serving the interests of end users by providing an authoritative Internet space where information, services and resources of the brand and, potentially, its affiliates and partners that are associated with the brand will be closely controlled by Societe Nationale des Chemins de fer Francais (SNCF). The majority of the anticipated domain name registrations in the .sncf gTLD will be used in the promotion and communication of the SNCF brand and its rail services. A subset of domain names has the potential to be created and used for communication and marketing purposes, with internet users assured of brand authenticity.
SNCF, also known as the French National Railway Corporation, was established in 1938. SNCF is France’s national state-owned railway company that offers an extended range of services to ensure door to door mobility for clients including passengers, transport, logistics operators and regional and local Transport Organizing Authorities. SNCF has 5 main areas of expertise:
1. SNCF Infra (rail and related infrastructure): In 2010, SNCF Infra had 15,000 trains running daily across 36 countries.
2. SNCF Proximites (local, urban and regional passenger services): SNCF Proximites transported an average of 10 million passengers per day in 2010.
3. SNCF Voyages (operating long-distance and high-speed passenger rail services): SNCF Voyages and its subsidiaries carried 132 million passengers in 2010 and the www.voyages-sncf.com website is the leading online travel agency in France, with over 10 million visitors per month and an additional 2 million visitors per month accessing Voyages-sncf.com via mobile phones.
4. SNCF Geodis (providing freight and logistic services): SNCF Geodis was operating in 120 countries across 5 continents and was ranked No 1 in France and No 2 in Europe leading European operator in freight transport and logistics and the 7th leading operator worldwide in 2010.
5. Gares & Connexions: Gares & Connexions, which handles train-station management and development, has about 2 billion travellers transit through their stations each year and was operating about 3,000 passenger stations in France in 2010.
SNCF is present in 120 countries, employs over 240,000 people and has generated revenue of €30.5 billion in 2010, €33 billion in 2011. As a world leader in the area of mobility and logistics, continuous innovation and consumer trust are paramount considerations in SNCF’s activities.
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, the development in this arena in the current domain name system has exposed both businesses and consumers to increased criminal activities over the internet, including data breach, hacking and phishing. These sophisticated criminal activities cause reputational damage to businesses as internet users lose consumer confidence and trust with the businesses targeted by such criminal activities. The .sncf gTLD will facilitate greater trust and assurance from internet users connecting with SNCF online, whilst still allowing convenient and efficient interaction.
SNCF’s mission and purpose of the proposed new gTLD share ICANN’s initiatives to promote public interest. SNCF is committed to contribute towards achieving such initiatives in line with ICANN’s Affirmation of Commitments, which includes:
- consumer trust: the .sncf gTLD registry will be operated in a centralised manner with a restrictive registration policy. Registration of domain names will only be available to SNCF, at this stage, which will provide added consumer trust that .sncf domain names are trustworthy. As the .sncf domain names are subject to registration standards, policies and procedures under SNCF’s control, this eliminates the possibility of malicious conduct within the .sncf 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 .sncf 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 SNCF’s marketing efforts through its ability to create new second and third level domain names on demand. These names will provide the consumers with more choices for interacting with SNCF. As SNCF has effective control over the registration and use of domain names under the .sncf domain space, this will also contribute towards general service innovations on the internet.
Given the restricted nature of the .sncf gTLD, the projected number of registration is likely to be limited. It is anticipated that up to 1000 domain names will be registered in the first year. However, over the next few years, the number of registrations is likely to increase to about 2000 domain names as SNCF create relevant domain names for use including product and services related to its rail services.
SNCF will utilise Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) at the second level, including French, Asiatic (including Japanese, Chinese and Korean), Arabic and Cyrillic languages. The use of IDNs will allow internet users to engage with .sncf in their native language, creating a more positive user experience and encouraging diversity. As the use of the .sncf gTLD evolves, it is anticipated that the use of IDNs, including additional languages, will increase within the .sncf domain space.
SNCF is a well-recognised global brand with its “SNCF” trademark registered in 11 countries and territories including the EU, the US and China for categories such as Vehicles (Class 12); Transportation and storage (Class 39); Hotels and Restaurants (Class 43). Its “SNCF Assistance”, “SNCF Conseil”, “SNCF Consulting”, “SNCF La Radio”, “Le Train SNCF”, “Le Train by SNCF”, “Le Train from SNCF”, “Fret SNCF”, “SNCFI”, “SNCF International” trademarks are also registered in many countries and most of the time in the same categories as mentioned.
SNCF has 67 existing domain names with an exact match to the applied-for .sncf string and its “SNCF” trademark in domain spaces including but not limited to sncf.com, sncf.travel, sncf.fr and sncf.jp. The company also has an existing domain name in Russian IDN in снцф.рф.
Recently, SNCF was successful in securing sunrise application for 16 domain spaces such as sncf.asia, sncf.xxx and an SNCF domain name in Chinese IDN in 法国国营铁路公司.asia based on existing trademark registration.
SNCF believes that the .sncf gTLD is unlikely to cause confusion with either a generic term or any existing TLDs. SNCF trademarks are a leading global brand with significant reputation for its rail services in Europe and operates with a strong reputation in countries all around the world. SNCF has used the term “SNCF” as a renowned brand in conjunction with its mobility and logistics businesses for over 70 years.
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|gTLD||Full Legal Name||Detail|