Freenom Closes $3M in Series A Funding
AMSTERDAM -- December 16, 2013
Freenom, the free domain name provider, announced today that it has closed $3M
in Series A funding from a group of investors led by Kima Ventures (KIMA), the
most active angel investor in the world. Freenom will use the funds to expand
its top level domain management operations, to expand its AnyCast cloud
network and the development of commercial initiatives combining country top
level domains with local communities.
"Our current partners are very committed to the free domain name idea and
industry," said Joost Zuurbier, CEO & Founder of Freenom. "We are pleased to
work with KIMA and the other members of this investment group to accelerate
our growth and to expand our technology and presence online."
One of KIMA's Co-founders, Xavier Niel, is a French entrepreneur and
businessman, active in the telecommunications and technology industry and best
known as founder and majority shareholder of the French Internet service
provider Iliad, trading under the Free brand. The management of Freenom
recognizes his experience and know-how in freemium business models as a
valuable asset to the company.
Freenom is managing the registry operations for the TK (Tokelau), GA (Gabon),
CF (Central African Republic) and ML (Mali) top level domains. With more than
20 million active domain names, Freenom manages the largest domain name
portfolio after .COM. Domains are provided for free to individuals and
businesses worldwide. These domains work as any other paid domain. Websites
with a free domain have no advertisements and can be renewed at no cost.
Free domain name registrants are found everywhere, especially in regions where
the number of internet users is increasing rapidly. China and Brazil are
amongst the largest user groups of free domains. But also in the local partner
countries, like Gabon and Mali, free domains have become very popular.
"The free domain name model radically changes the way a top level domain
registry operates. We help partner countries to transform paid domain systems
and processes into a new platform where domains are free and can be registered
by everyone, locally and abroad." Zuurbier continues. "We try to build truly
win-win relationships with our partner countries. As a result we've seen a
huge increase of local website building and technology usage locally, while
providing the countries an additional income stream and promotional exposure.
KIMA's investment allows us to rapidly expand this platform, to reach out to
additional countries and to invest in new partner relationships."
Revenue is generated by monetizing the expired domain names. Domains that are
no longer used by the registrant or are expired are taken back by Freenom and
the residual traffic is sold to advertisement networks. Next to this primary
source of income, additional revenue will be generated by offering digital
white labeled services, such as hosting packages, SSL certificates and others,
to free domain name users. These new services will be available from January
Freenom found a safe way to provide free domain names to the global internet
community. Freenom operates a global network of more than 50 trusted partners
that have implemented an API to take down domain names immediately when these
domains are allegedly involved in spam, phishing or copyright infringement.
Partners include Facebook, Twitter, Anti Phishing Alliance of China and many
others. As a result of this initiative .TK, the largest country code top level
domain, is seen as one of the safest domains, according to a recent study of
About Freenom: Freenom is a Registry Operator for top level domains. With a
secure and stable DNS AnyCast Cloud, fast Registration System and unique
business model built around free domain names Freenom provides a complete
solution for all top level domains. Freenom operates more than 20 million
active domain names and is the largest Registry Operator after .COM. Freenom
is headquartered in Amsterdam, Netherlands, but has satellite offices in Palo
Alto (U.S.A.) and Dakar (Senegal).
About Kima Ventures: The Kima Ventures fund was started in 2010 by
entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs with the goal to support and finance
innovative companies with seed capital all over the world. Since 2010, Kima
Ventures has made investments in 205 companies in 23 different countries all
over the world including companies such as Sparrow, Rapportive,
FreshPlanet/SongPop, FormLabs, MovableInk, Powtoon, Weekdone, ShareDesk and
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Marcel Trik, +31 20 5315726
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