18(b) How do you expect that your proposed gTLD will benefit registrants, Internet users, and others?

Prototypical answer:

gTLDFull Legal NameDetail
.GROCERYWal-Mart Stores, Inc.View

In recent years, Walmart has invested heavily in global eCommerce in order to reach more customers. In 2010, Walmart consolidated its eCommerce activities around the world in a Global eCommerce Division with three goals: 1) Develop and execute a global eCommerce strategy; 2) Accelerate global online channel growth; and 3) Create technology platforms and applications for every Walmart market. Walmart understands the impact that changing technology has had on retail and has dedicated eCommerce platforms around the world; the investments made in these platforms are helping to accelerate Walmartʹs growth in other markets. The .GROCERY gTLD will be a small, specialized gTLD with no public registration sales market, and Walmart anticipates issuance of no more than 500 second level .GROCERY domain names within the first five years of operation of the .GROCERY gTLD. Walmart has based its planning for the .GROCERY gTLD on careful analysis of the history of gTLD operations, particularly the introduction of gTLDs since 2001. This analysis has been developed by an internal team of specialists at Walmart as well as outside counsel and advisors. Walmart will be ready for the .GROCERY gTLD to be delegated within one year of signing a registry agreement with ICANN.

The .GROCERY gTLD is planned as a “single-enterprise TLD”, with the goal of promoting and protecting Walmart’s online presence and identity; expanding Walmart’s marketing and promotion efforts; and providing a secure channel for delivery of online products and services. Owning the .GROCERY gTLD will provide Walmart with the ability to enhance Walmart’s business model and distribution channels, as well as Walmart’s strategic positioning. The .GROCERY gTLD will be used to further Walmart’s core goal of providing a broad assortment of quality merchandise and services at everyday low prices, to complement Walmart’s branding and brand protection strategies, and to create new business opportunities. The foregoing will enable Walmart to capitalize in various areas, such as protecting Walmart brands; building brand loyalty; building customer trust; and enhancing security.

For the first three years of operation, Walmart will permit only the registration of second-level domain names in .GROCERY internally. These first years will allow Walmart to establish its operations and achieve full sustainability. On or about the third year of operation of the .GROCERY gTLD, Walmart will evaluate whether opportunities exist to carry out the business strategy for the .GROCERY gTLD through expansion including potential registration of second level .GROCERY domain names to third parties.

18(b)(i).

A central purpose of the .GROCERY gTLD will be to provide innovative product and service delivery platforms to customers through Walmart’s use of intuitive .GROCERY namespaces (second level domain names) in relation to Walmart’s core goal of providing a broad assortment of quality merchandise and services at everyday low prices. Walmart believes that the proposed .GROCERY gTLD has the potential to offer the following benefits to Internet users:

1) Establish a trusted source of information about Walmart for the millions of consumers who purchase goods in its stores and online, for investors seeking information, and for the general Internet user population as a whole;

2) Provide Walmart and its qualified subsidiaries and affiliates with short and memorable Internet addresses;

3) Improve navigation to Walmart products, services, advertising campaigns, public interest content, public awareness initiatives, etc.;

4) Through the adoption of new gTLDs by the wider Internet community, Internet users will benefit from a lower incidence of phishing and malware, which are often associated with typos of domain names in the .COM space and owned by cybersquatters, since they will be navigating to domain names in gTLDs like .GROCERY instead;

5) Minimize the cost and need for defensive registrations because domain names within the .GROCERY gTLD will be allocated to Walmart and its qualified subsidiaries and affiliates only; and

6) Develop a potential platform for the secure access to, and purchase of, Walmart products and information, in order to minimize the potential for counterfeit or infringing goods and services.

Examples of such services and second level domain names that may be used by Walmart include the following:

www.savings.grocery
www.rollback.grocery
www.affordablemeal.grocery
www.fresh.grocery
www.produce.grocery
www.bakery.grocery
www.seafood.grocery
www.deli.grocery
www.frozenfood.grocery
www.bread.grocery
www.meat.grocery
www.dairy.grocery
www.pasta.grocery
www.snack.grocery
www.beverages.grocery
www.cleaning.grocery
www.health.grocery
www.wellness.grocery
www.giving.grocery
www.community.grocery
www.sustainability.grocery
www.healthyliving.grocery
www.thanksgivingmeals.grocery
www.tailgaiting.grocery

Walmart customers will be able to more easily and intuitively locate each of the aforementioned products and services, and more, due to the uniform naming convention that will be used by Walmart for second level .GROCERY domain names.

18(b)(ii).

The primary mission and purpose of the .GROCERY gTLD is to provide a trusted, hierarchical, and intuitive online vehicle to deliver Walmart content and products, as well as information about the companyʹs brands, business, and focus. As Walmart continues to expand, it is the companyʹs desire to continue to pursue and develop opportunities to market and distribute its products and brands through a variety of platforms, including the Internet. Given that consumers are increasingly demanding access to companies and brands via a number of online channels, including domain names, Walmart believes that the .GROCERY gTLD has the potential to provide an innovative, virtual avenue to Walmart products and information that will deepen and broaden the companyʹs relationship with consumers.

Walmart customers’ security on the Internet will be aided by Walmart’s use of .GROCERY domain names as customers will recognize that .GROCERY domain names can be trusted as legitimate Walmart websites and email addresses. Walmart intends to gradually introduce second level .GROCERY domain names over a three year period while at the same promoting such domain names and associated products and services to customers. As additional second level domain names “go live,” and Walmart customers begin to recognize and use the domain names and associate .GROCERY with Walmart, Walmart customers will be less likely to be deceived by phishing attempts, spam emails, and other Internet based fraud attempts that improperly use Walmart’s name and⁄or trademarks.

Walmart’s use of the .GROCERY gTLD will not only benefit Walmart, but it will also benefit consumers and the Internet community at-large by improving the safety and security of interactions on the Internet.

18(b)(iii).

Walmart earns the trust of our customers every day by providing a broad assortment of quality merchandise and services at every day low prices (“EDLP”) while fostering a culture that rewards and embraces mutual respect, integrity and diversity. EDLP is our pricing philosophy under which we price items at a low price every day so our customers trust that our prices will not change under frequent promotional activity. This focus drives everything we do at Walmart. And, for the millions of customers who shop in our stores around the world each week, it means they can trust that our brand means we have every day low prices. Walmart’s commitment to providing every day low prices is positively reflected in customer experiences at our stores and Walmart will extend its longstanding commitment to customer service to the operation of the .GROCERY gTLD.

Walmart believes that the .GROCERY gTLD will provide a single, trusted, ecosystem experience for Internet users worldwide, particularly consumers seeking Walmart products or information online. In addition to providing Walmart with short, memorable, and intuitive domain names, the .GROCERY gTLD will also indicate to users that they are navigating in a secure space where all domain names and content are owned and controlled by Walmart, thereby assuring them that they are protected from potential unauthorized, infringing, pirated, or malicious content.

18(b)(iv).

The market for the .GROCERY gTLD for the initial three years of operation will be limited to registrations within Walmart. Because of this condition, any registration and use requirements are more appropriately vested in these corporate⁄affiliate agreements and not in a domain name registration agreement. Walmart’s strategy for release of second level .GROCERY domain names will be determined by corporate marketing executives and by the business plans of Walmart, and Walmart anticipates registration of no more than 500 second level domains within the .GROCERY gTLD at the conclusion of the first five years of operation. On or before the conclusion of the third year of operation, Walmart will evaluate whether opportunities exist to advance Walmart’s business strategies for the .GROCERY gTLD through registrations of second level .GROCERY domain names to parties other than Walmart. Following is a description of Walmart’s currently planned four-stage rollout for the .GROCERY gTLD.

1) Stage 1

The initial stage of implementation of the .GROCERY gTLD will involve Walmart registering a limited number of second-level domain names such as, for example, whois.grocery, nic.grocery, home.grocery, and savings.grocery.

The initial limited use of second level .GROCERY domain names will provide Walmartʹs technical services vendors and IT personnel with the ability to run tests to ensure seamless and secure access using .GROCERY domain names, interoperability with various software and Web-based applications, and unbroken and secure use of all domain names. This initial allocation will also allow appropriate Walmart staff to coordinate with internal and external staff responsible for the delegation and setup phases of the .GROCERY gTLD to ensure proper transition from delegation to full operation of the .GROCERY registry.

2) Stage 2

Once all testing has been successfully completed, Walmart will begin allocating second level domain names in the .GROCERY gTLD for more widespread use by Walmart. Walmart will also begin evaluating strategies to potentially seek to migrate Walmart customer Internet visits⁄traffic away from (i) relevant second-level domain names owned by Walmart in other TLDs and (ii) long post-domain URLs that are currently being used, to Walmartʹs new .GROCERY gTLD.

During Stage Two, Walmart will also evaluate potentially expanding the operations of the .GROCERY gTLD to permit registration by other registrants, including customers, licensees, and⁄or strategic partners. Should an assessment of Walmart’s expansion strategy lead to a decision to extend registration rights to other parties, the expansion would take place during Stage Four. Any expansion would be conditioned on a review of Specification 9 (Registry Code of Conduct), as set forth in the “New gTLD Registry Agreement”, to ensure compliance with any potential evolution of Walmartʹs business model.

3) Stage 3

Walmart will continue to release second level .GROCERY domain names for use by Walmart. Depending upon the analysis undertaken by Walmart during Stage Two, and associated conclusions, Walmart may also begin to seek a more permanent migration of Internet traffic away from (i) relevant second-level domain names owned by Walmart in other TLDs and (ii) long post-domain URLs, toward the .GROCERY gTLD. It is during this stage that Walmart may also reach its decision to extend registration rights to a wider class of registrants, potentially including customers, licensees, and⁄or strategic partners. The dates of such an expansion decision are subject to change depending upon business, strategic, and industry factors at the time, as well as broader adoption rates of new gTLDs, and the expansion decision date is anticipated to be no earlier than three years from the date the .GROCERY gTLD begins operation.

4) Stage 4

Based on its experiences discussed above in prior stages, Walmart will assess whether its business plans and .GROCERY strategies should be augmented by extending registrations to a wider class of registrants, potentially including customers, licensees, and⁄or strategic partners and, if so, Walmart will begin to implement such an extension of use of the .GROCERY gTLD. Walmart anticipates that changes to the domain name industry, particularly the impact of single-enterprise gTLDs, will take at least five years to be realized. Any decision to expand the .GROCERY gTLD beyond use by Walmart will take into account the status and market impact of other single-enterprise gTLDs as well as the technical analysis of potential expansion of the .GROCERY gTLD.

The potential future uses of the .GROCERY gTLD by Walmart will also be driven by Walmartʹs future business strategies as identified in its annual report and investor filings. (See, e,g., http:⁄⁄investors.walmartstores.com⁄phoenix.zhtml?c=112761&p=irol-financialinfo.) Utilizing current projections based upon Walmartʹs existing businesses, future business plans, current domain name portfolio, and other strategic factors, Walmart estimates that second-level .GROCERY domain name registrations will be in line with the projections set forth in the financial template provided in response to Question 46 of this application.

18(b)(v).

The .GROCERY gTLD will be a small, specialized gTLD with no public registration market for sale of second level domain names, and Walmart anticipates issuance of no more than 500 second level .GROCERY domain names within the first five years of operation of the .GROCERY gTLD.

Nonetheless, as a global retail company, Walmart respects the privacy of its customers and other consumers. The company employs a variety of physical, electronic, contractual, and managerial safeguards to protect personal and confidential information in its stores and on its websites. Walmart will take similar precautions to protect registrant and user data associated with the .GROCERY gTLD. Furthermore, given that every domain name will be registered to Walmart or its qualified subsidiaries or affiliates, Walmart has a vested interest in ensuring that accurate and current registrant information is readily available in connection with each .GROCERY domain name.

Walmart will ensure that the operation of the .GROCERY gTLD will be consistent with its Privacy Policy, see http:⁄⁄walmartstores.com⁄PrivacySecurity⁄9243.aspx.

In addition, Walmart intends to incorporate contractual language in its Registry-Registrar Agreement (RRA) modeled after language that has been included in the template Registry Agreement that has been successfully utilized by existing ICANN gTLD Registry Operators. The template Registry Agreement states, “Registry Operator shall (i) notify each ICANN-accredited registrar that is a party to the registry-registrar agreement for the TLD of the purposes for which data about any identified or identifiable natural person (“Personal Data”) submitted to Registry Operator by such registrar is collected and used under this Agreement or otherwise and the intended recipients (or categories of recipients) of such Personal Data, and (ii) require such registrar to obtain the consent of each registrant in the TLD for such collection and use of Personal Data. Registry Operator shall take reasonable steps to protect Personal Data collected from such registrar from loss, misuse, unauthorized disclosure, alteration or destruction. Registry Operator shall not use or authorize the use of Personal Data in a way that is incompatible with the notice provided to registrars.ʺ

18(b)(vi).

Consistent with Walmart’s plans for a phased introduction of second level .GROCERY domain names over a period of years, Walmart envisions a similar phased introduction of marketing efforts to promote recognition and use of .GROCERY domain names by Walmart’s current and potential customers. Walmart anticipates allocating a percentage of its overall advertising budget to promote the .GROCERY namespace through a variety of marketing and customer outreach efforts including, for example, through traditional media, social media and electronic messaging and branding campaigns.

Similar gTLD applications: (8)

gTLDFull Legal NameDetail
.WALMARTWal-Mart Stores, Inc.View
.一号店Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.View
.GEORGEWal-Mart Stores, Inc.View
.ASDAWal-Mart Stores, Inc.View
.SAMSCLUBWal-Mart Stores, Inc.View
.FRONTIERFrontier Communications CorporationView
.FTRFrontier Communications CorporationView
.GROCERYSafeway Inc.View