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Status: Proposed
Type: Brand TLD
Priority #: 1435 - The Gap, Inc.

More information: NTLDStatsLogo.png

.gap is a Brand TLD being proposed in ICANN's New gTLD Program. The applicant is The Gap, Inc.[1]

Application Details

The following is excerpted from the applicant's response to question #18:

"The Gap, Inc. (“Gap Inc.”) is a leading global retailer serving the needs of consumers around the world through its five brands – Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta, and Piperlime. Gap Inc. has 134,000 employees and stores or franchises in 31 different countries. Gap Inc.’s products are available for purchase online to consumers in over 90 countries, and Gap Inc. content is accessible in the .COM gTLD and the .CA, .CN, .EU, and .JP ccTLDs.

Through a unified corporate approach, Gap Inc. intends to submit five gTLD applications for the strings .GAP, .BANANAREPUBLIC, .OLDNAVY, .ATHLETA, and .PIPERLIME, collectively the Gap Inc. Family of gTLDs.

In 2011, Interbrand ranked the Gap brand as one of the top 100 brands in the world, with an estimated value of $4 billion. The preservation of this brand is of paramount importance to Gap Inc. in all aspects of its operations, including and especially on the Internet. Operating the brand as a gTLD is expected to be an important part of its digital strategy in the future.

Gap Inc. will be analyzing and evaluating other .BRAND gTLD applications as well as general market adoption to determine short- and long-term potential best-in-class use case options to most effectively serve and enhance Gap Inc.’s online strategy as a leading global retailer with operations in the following segments:

RETAIL STORES: Founded in 1969, Gap stores offer an extensive selection of classically styled, high quality, casual apparel at moderate price points. Products range from wardrobe basics such as denim, khakis, and T-shirts, to fashion apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men and women. In 1986, Gap brand entered the children’s apparel market with the introduction of GapKids, and established BabyGap in 1989. These stores offer casual apparel and accessories in the tradition of Gap style and quality for children ages newborn through pre-teen. Gap brand also offers maternity apparel. In 1998, Gap brand launched GapBody, offering women’s underwear, sleepwear, loungewear, and sports and active apparel. Gap brand operates stores in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Ireland, Japan, China and Italy.

OUTLET STORES: Gap Inc. also operates Gap Outlet stores, which carry similar products at lower price points.

GAP ONLINE: In 1997, Gap Inc. introduced Gap Online, an online store found at Gap.com. Gap Online offers products comparable to those carried in the Gap, GapKids, BabyGap, and GapBody stores, as well as extended sizes not found in stores. Customers in Canada can shop online at GapCanada.ca, customers in the United Kingdom and select European countries can shop online at Gap.eu, customers in China can shop online at Gap.cn, and customers in select international countries can shop online at Gap.com.

The intended future mission and purpose of the .GAP gTLD is to serve as a trusted, hierarchical, and intuitive namespace provided by Gap Inc., its subsidiaries, partners and affiliates, for Gap brand customers and other consumers. Gap Inc. will be the entity to file this application and bring the .GAP gTLD to market.

Although ICANN has not specifically recognized a .BRAND gTLD specification in the current round, it is widely anticipated in the brand community that this will become a specialty subset of gTLDs. .GAP is intended to be one of those .BRAND gTLDs, with the goal of protecting Gap Inc.’s online presence and identity, expanding its marketing and promotion efforts, providing a secure channel for online products and services, and offering a platform through which to consolidate many of the intellectual property activities of Gap Inc.

Gap Inc. intends to initially limit registration and use of domain names within the .GAP gTLD to Gap Inc., its subsidiaries and qualified affiliates and strategic partners. This initial limited use will allow Gap Inc. to establish its operations and achieve full sustainability. After year three, Gap Inc. will evaluate whether opportunities exist to carry out the business strategy for the gTLD through expansion that continues the sustainable operations of the registry through fee-based registrations to parties other than Gap Inc., its subsidiaries, affiliates, and partners."[2]