Back in November many were surprised by the news that Donuts was acquiring Afilias. While mergers and acquisitions happen all the time, this deal was big news and to many observers probably a little surprising.
Yesterday the deal closed. The “change of control” had been on the agenda of a recent ICANN Board meeting, but nothing of any substance came out of that.
According to a press release from Donuts the two companies are now one corporate entity. They’re saying that it’s “business as usual” for all parties concerned.
While that might be true in the short term I suspect that there will be changes in the coming months, though how those changes will manifest themselves is unclear.
At a practical level I’d expect some kind of merge of the technology systems that both companies were using. Donuts being a newer company has more modern interfaces, for example.
But shifting millions of domains, registration data and thousands of registrar connections between platforms is a huge undertaking, so it’s unlikely to happen quickly if at all.
From a more practical perspective I suspect there’ll be a trimming of the staff headcount in the upper echelons, after a suitable transition period of course.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens with other things like the entire .web debacle. Will there be an appetite to continue them or to simply focus on selling products and services to improve the bottom line?