Abacus America, Inc.








Registry Operator’s Proposal


















from the developers of

Rodopi R  a complete solution for operating TLD Registry

                                                                        up and running NOW






San Diego, October, 1-st, 2000

Table of Content



D2       Identity of Registry Operator 5

D3       Other Business Locations. 5

D4       Business Entity. 5

D5       URL of Registry Operator’s Prinicpal World Wide Web Site. 6

D6       Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S Number 6

D7       Number of Employees. 6

D8       Total Revenue for Last-Ended Fiscal Year 6

D9       Directors, Officers and Managers; Five Percent Owners. 6

D10     Additional Information Contact Persons. 6

D11     Identity of Subcontractors. 7


D12     Executive Summary. 8

D13.1      Registry Operator’s Capabilities. 9

D13.1.1       Company Information. 9

D13.1.2       Current Business Operations. 9

A.    Services. 9

1.     Domain Name Registration. 9

2.     Web Hosting. 10

3.     Internet Dial-Up Connectivity. 10

4.     DSL and Other Dedicated Lines. 10

5.     Bundles. 10

6.     E-Commerce. 10

7.     Server Hosting (Co-Location) 11

8.     E-Mail and Newsgroups. 11

9.     Rodopi Outsource. 11

10.       Credit Card Processing. 11

11.       Clearing House Services. 11

12.       Advertising. 12

B.     Products. 12

13.       Rodopi 5.0. 12

14.       Rodopi Modules. 12

15.       Rodopi DN.. 12

16.       Rodopi R (new and presently in beta testing) 12

17.       Third Party Products. 13

C.    Customer Support 13

D.    Facilities. 13

D13.1.3       Past Business Operations / Entity History. 14

D13.1.4    Registry / Database / Internet-Related Experience and Activities. 14

A.    Registrar Experience. 14

B.     Internet Experience. 14

C.    Registry Experience. 14

D.    Database Experience. 15

E.     Automated Service Provisioning. 15

D13.1.5       Mission. 15

D13.1.6       Management 15

Mr. Ivan Vachovsky, President and CEO.. 15

Mr. Arthur R. Ekroos, Vice President Business Development, Sales and Marketing. 18

Mr. Robert A. Degan, Director 18

Mrs.  Lilian T. Vachovsky, CFO.. 20

D13.1.7       Staff/Employees. 21

D13.1.8       Commercial General Liability Insurance. 21

D13.2      Business Plan for Proposed Registry Operations. 22

D13.2.1       Services to be Provided. 22

D13.2.2       Revenue Model 22

D13.2.3       Market 23

D13.2.4       Marketing Plan. 24

D13.2.5       Estimated Demand for Registry Services. 24

D13.2.6       Resources Required to Meet the Demand. 25

A.        Financial Resources. 25

B.     Human Resources. 25

C.    Equipment and Software. 26

D.    Physical Plant 26

D13.2.7       Acquiring the Necessary Systems and Facilities. 27

A.    Equipment 27

B.     Software OS. 27

C.    Software Database. 27

D.    Rodopi R.. 27

E.     Facilities. 27

F.     Total Time to Start-Up. 28

D13.2.8       Staff Size Expansion Capability. 28

D13.2.9       Availability of Additional Management Personnel 28

D13.2.10     Term of Registry Agreement 28

D13.2.11     Expected Costs Associated with the Operation of the Proposed Registry. 29

D13.2.12     Expected Revenue Associated with the Operation of the Proposed Registry. 29

D13.2.13     Capital Requirements. 29

D13.2.14     Business Risks and Opportunities. 29

D13.2.15     Registry Failure Provisions. 30

D13.3.     Pro-Forma Financial Projections. 30

D13.3.1 Projected sales. 31

D13.3.2 Projected expenses. 31

D13.3.3  Projected cash flow.. 31

D13.3.3 Projected Income statements. 31

D13.3.4. Projected balance sheets. 31

D13.4 Supporting documentation. 32

D13.4.1. Organizational documents. 32

D13.4.2. References. 38

D13.4.3. Annual report 39

D13.4.5. Proof of Insurance. 41


D15.1      Detailed Description of the Registry Operator’s Technical Capabilities. 44

D15.2      Technical Plan for the Proposed Registry Operations. 46

D15.2.1       General Description of Proposed Facilities and Systems. 46

A.    Central Location. 47

B.     Additional DNS Server Locations. 48

D15.2.2.      Registry-Registrar Model and Protocol 48

D15.2.3       Database Capabilities. 48

D15.2.4       Zone File Generation. 49

D15.2.5.      Zone File Distribution and Publication. 49

D15.2.6       Billing and Collection Systems. 50

D15.2.7       Data Escrow and Backup. 50

D15.2.8       Publicly-Accessible Look Up / Whois Service. 51

D15.2.9.      System Security. 51

D15.2.10     Peak Capacities. 51

D15.2.11     System Reliability. 51

D15.2.12     System Outage Prevention. 53

D15.2.13     System Recovery Procedures. 53

D.15.2.14    Technical and Other Support 53

D15.3 Subcontractors. 53





D2       Identity of Registry Operator


Abacus America, Inc. dba Rodopi Software

      4660 La Jolla Village Dr., Suite 880

      San Diego, CA, 92122


      Phone:  (877) 4RODOPI

                  (877) 476-3674


      Fax:      (858) 453-2714


      E-mail: project@abac.com



D3       Other Business Locations


            Abacus America, Inc. dba A+Net

      5266 Eastgate Mall

      San Diego, CA, 92121


      Phone:  (877) APLUS NET

                  (877) 275-8763


      Fax:      (858) 450-0567


      E-mail: project@abac.com


      Abacus America, Inc. dba A+Net

      300 South Harbor Ave., Suite 520

      Anaheim, CA, 92805


      Phone:  (877) APLUS NET

                  (877) 275-8763


      Fax:      (858) 450-0567


      E-mail: project@abac.com


D4       Business Entity


Abacus America, Inc. is a California corporation.

D5       URL of Registry Operator’s Prinicpal World Wide Web Site


             www.aplus.net; see also www.rodopi.com


            Oerational test Registry available at:



D6       Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S Number


            DUN  82-501-0325


D7       Number of Employees


            Abacus America employs seventy-four (74) full time employees.


D8       Total Revenue for Last-Ended Fiscal Year


            Abacus America’s revenues for fiscal year 2000 are $7,465,203


D9       Directors, Officers and Managers; Five Percent Owners


            Ivan Vachovsky, President, CEO, Chairman of the Board

      Art Ekroos, COO, VP Business Development, Director

      Robert Degan, Director

      Lilian Vachovsky, CFO



D10     Additional Information Contact Persons


            General Business Issues:

Ivan Vachovsky

Phone: (858) 558-8522 x103; Fax: (858) 453-2714

E-mail: ivan@abac.com


Financial Issues:

Lilian Vachovsky

Phone: (858) 455-7709 x138; Fax: (858) 450-0567

E-mail: lilian@abac.com


Legal Issues:

John Selbak, Esq.

Musick, Peeler & Garrett

One Wilshire Blvd., Suite 2000

Los Angeles, California 90017

Phone: (213) 629-7747; Fax: (213) 624-1376

E-mail:  j.selbak@mpglaw.com



D11     Identity of Subcontractors


            Abacus America will not involve any subcontractors in the operation of the registry.




D12     Executive Summary


            Abacus America, Inc. is California Corporation which has been in business since 1992. It has two major divisions:  (1) A+Net Internet Services (www.aplus.net ), and (2) Rodopi Software (www.rodopi.com).  A+Net is a diversified Internet Service Provider and ICANN accredited Domain Names Registrar.  It has over 30,000 paying customers and over 150,000 users of the free services offered by A+Net.   Rodopi Software develops and sells Rodopi, a provisioning, billing and customer care software package for ISPs.  Over 600 ISPs are using Rodopi software.


            Rodopi software has developed software specifically designed for domain name registration, software which will be directly applicable to Abacus America’s role as a registry operator.  Two additional products have been developed and commercially used for domain names registration:  (1) Rodopi DN, a specialized product for domain name registration, and (2) PIRIN, an XML protocol for domain name registration with free API software for C and Perl programming languages used by resellers.  Both software packages incorporate Registrar-Partner Protocol (RRP) technology.  Both are commercially available. Over 400 resellers are using PIRIN.


                        Abacus America’s mission is to provide quality Internet services to the public on a horizontal marketing basis, without niche preferences. The company provides quality software solutions to ISPs for automated provisioning, billing and customer care.


                        Abacus America is a privately held corporation. Sales for fiscal year 2000 were $7.2 million, up from $4.1 million for fiscal year 1999.  The company continues to enjoy healthy growth in revenues.  Abacus America is also fiscally conservative and very financially stable, with no outstanding loans against the company.  Operations carry an average gross profit margin of forty percent (40%), while most of the profits are reinvested to continue the growth of the company.  Abacus America has been continuously profitable since 1994.


            The market for Internet domain names is growing at the same rate as the Internet itself.   More and more businesses and individuals will seek to claim their own piece of the Internet by reserving their own domain name.  This trend has been very strong in the past:  23 million domain names have been registered to date, with over half of those registrations occurring in the last twelve (12) months.  Abacus America believes this trend will be further fueled by the introduction of new TLDs.  According to a recent research study by register.com, over 340 million domain names will be registered by the end of year 2003.


Abacus America, Inc. is well positioned to participate in this market:


a)      Abacus America has vast experience as a registrar, and was the ninth (9th) ICANN accredited registrar worldwide for existing TLDs;

b)      Abacus America has developed two commercial products for domain name registration: (1) Rodopi DN and (2) PIRIN;


c)      Abacus America has developed a working prototype of a registry system Rodopi R for the proposed new TLDs, including RRP server, WhoIs server and registrar billing.  A test drive of this software is available at http://rodopi.abac.net .


d)      Abacus America has the human and financial resources to support the operation of new registry for the proposed new TLDs, as well as the stability to ensure that it will be around for many years to operate the registry and fulfill its obligations as a registry.


            The management team of Abacus America consists of seasoned executives with thirty (30) years of combined experience in product development and over twenty (20) years of experience in marketing and management. All members of the management team have earned their Masters degrees, and one member has earned their PhD.  One of the members is a former executive of Cisco.


            Abacus America is seeking accreditation by ICANN as a registry for the following new TLDs (in alphabetical order): .biz. cool. fam .inc and .xxx.  If accredited, Abacus America will subscribe an estimated one million domain names per quarter through the use of ICANN-accredited registrars.  Abacus America will therefore be in a position to contribute to the diversity of the Internet, the competitiveness of the domain name market, while providing the stability to this process based on well-thought out processes, procedures, software tools, enhancements to the utility of the DNS, protection of the intellectual property rights of third parties, and a wealth of background and experience as an existing ICANN-accredited registrar.  Moreover, Abacus America’s financial resources and fiscal health will ensure that Abacus America will remain a long-standing participant as a new TLD registry.


D13.1              Registry Operator’s Capabilities


D13.1.1           Company Information


            Abacus America, Inc. was organized as a California corporation on July, 1st, 1992.  Its corporate headquarters are located at 4660 La Jolla Village Drive, Suite 880, San Diego, CA, 92122. 


                        In 1995 Abacus organized its A+Net division to provide Internet services (described in more detail below).  A+Net now generates more than 80% of the company’s total revenues.


                        In 1996, Abacus organized a second division named Rodopi Software. Rodopi Software makes Rodopi billing/management/customer care software for the ISP and telecommunications industries (www.rodopi.com).   This division generates about 15% of the company’s total revenues.


                        Both the A+Net and Rodopi Software divisions have separate sales, development and support staff. Both divisions share management, accounting and marketing services through the parent company Abacus America, Inc.


                        A+Net has two more offices located at: 5266 Eastgate Mall, San Diego, CA, 92121 and 300 South Harbor Boulevard, Suite 520, Anaheim, CA, 92805.


            Abacus America presently employs 74 full time employees.  Over 30% of these employees have BS degrees, over 20% have BA degrees, and more than 15%  have MS degrees.


                        Abacus America is privately held corporation with Ivan Vachovsky and Lilian Vachovsky being the majority stockowners. All key employees (over 40% of the employees) have stock options in various stages of vesting.  No minority shareholder (including those vested in the stock option pool) holds more than 5% in the company.


                        Abacus America is a Microsoft Certified Solution Provider.  It has established partnerships with numerous technology companies, including Intel, Cisco, Lucent, 3COM, Compaq and several others technology and software companies for the purposes of integrating Rodopi Software for distribution with these companies’ products. References are available in section D13.4.2 below.


D13.1.2           Current Business Operations


            Abacus America provides products and services to its clients through its two major divisions: A+Net and Rodopi Software.  In general, A+Net provides diversified Internet services, whereas Rodopi Software provides provisioning, billing and customer care software to other ISPs.


A.        Services


1.      Domain Name Registration 


            Abacus America, Inc. was the 4th ICANN-accredited domain name registrar following the initial test period (the 9th accredited registrar world wide).  Abacus America operates under the fictitious business name “names4ever” (www.names4ever.com).  Domain names are offered directly to the consumers or through a network of other ISP partners. There are over 400 registered partners.


2.      Web Hosting


                  A+Net, a division of Abacus America, Inc. provides a variety of web hosting plans to satisfy consumer demand.  Advanced plans include on-line database management in addition to e-commerce features like on-line product catalogs and on-line credit card billing.  The more simple plans are designed to be inexpensive and easy to understand by mass consumers.  For example, the “websolo” hosting plan has been branded and sold on its own site at http://www.websolo.com.


                        To make its services even more appealing to the non-experienced user, A+Net has developed and offers (free of charge) a “do it yourself” web page development tool for people with zero or little knowledge of HTML language and no programming and/or writing experience.


                        A+Net hosts close to 100,000 domains currently and is adding about 7,000 more per month.  The web hosting plans represent about 40% of the total plans served by A+Net.  More than 90% of all web hosting is for medium and small businesses.  These figures do not include personal web pages, available with every dial-up account, as well as the free web hosting which is offered in exchange for banner ads.


3.      Internet Dial-Up Connectivity


            A+Net offers nationwide modem dial-up services.  A+Net utilizes the latest V.90 technology to provide speed of up to 56Kbs over a single channel connection and up to 128 Kbs over dual channel connection (known as “shotgun”).  The quality of the services is secured by using state of the art equipment from Ascend and Cisco, as well as the best possible backbone connections from UUNet and MCI (recently ranked #1 and #2 as Internet backbones for year 1998 by  “Interactive Week” magazine).  To secure nationwide coverage, A+Net is reselling services from well-known wholesalers like PSINet and Epoch.


                        A+Net differentiates from it’s competitors by (a) offering 24/7 instant account activation; (b) providing 24/7 quality live support; (c) offering a “no busy signals” policy in writing; and (4) providing access to an interactive on-line “control panel” for account management.


                        A+Net has a variety of dial-up plans. The “bestseller” among these plans is the “unlimited dial-up with five (5) e-mail accounts and 2MB personal web site” for $19.95 mo.  The dial-up connectivity accounts represent less than 20% of all A+Net accounts.


4.      DSL and Other Dedicated Lines


            A+Net provides dedicated connections to the Internet for business customers and consumers. A+Net uses all presently available technologies in order to serve customers in different areas with different needs, primarily utilizing DSL. A+Net also offers Satellite Internet Connection for rural areas and events, Centrex ISDN, Frame Relay and Point to Point (T1, T3).  The number of accounts utilizing these technologies is relatively small (less than 5%), but the revenues generated from these services is approximately 10% of the total Internet services revenues.


                        Abacus America expects the number of such accounts to grow rapidly with the growing popularity of the DSL technology as an affordable high-speed alternative to Internet access equivalent (if not superior) to cable modems.


5.      Bundles


                  A+Net offers bundled Internet services in its efforts to attract wider market audience.  In essence, these bundles combine the same connectivity and web hosting services listed above in a manner meant to provide greater value to the consumer.


6.      E-Commerce


            A+Net offers complete e-commerce solutions.  A+Net has its own proprietary product, called Mercury Merchant Server (http://www.abac.com/merchant.html).  A+Net offers an on-line catalog, on-line store and back office package for e-commerce sites involving the sale of tangible items. Tax and shipping charges are calculated automatically.


                        For sales of non-tangible items, such as club memberships, newsletters, software, etc., A+Net offers a solution called “paybutton”. (www.paybutton.com).  Paybutton supports member databases, passwords, usage statistics, on-line credit card processing and reports.  Hundreds of Merchants worldwide are using A+Net’s e-commerce solutions.



7.      Server Hosting (Co-Location)


            A+Net has built out facilities for co-locating customer servers. This service is available to anyone who wishes to provide content to the Internet from his or her own server and seeks to save the expense of bringing high-speed links to their own location.


                        Services include rack space, an uninterrupted power supply, straight high speed connection to the Internet, services which assist the customer in building a server if the customer does not already have one, a remotely-opeated power outlet allowing for remote rebooting of the server, daily back up of the content and experienced consultation.


                        To attract server-hosting customers, A+Net also provides 24/7 access to the working area so that customers can work on their servers locally at any time.  A+Net makes its conference area available so that web designers, programmers and others who are hosting servers with A+Net can invite their customers for discussions, project reviews, etc.  Moreover, in order to attract customers nationwide and worldwide, and to avoid shipping equipment, A+Net is offering new combined plan for server co-location and server rental. The package is offered under the brand name www.server4me.com.


8.      E-Mail and Newsgroups


            E-mail services and news services are included in the connectivity and web hosting plans mentioned above.


9.      Rodopi Outsource


            Rodopi Outsource is a true ASP operation provided by the Rodopi Software division for over two years.  Rodopi Software will install and maintain the software and the database for the customer, after which time the customer can use the product through the web interface.  The customer does not need anything other than an Internet-connected computer and a web browser.  Over 50 ISPs are using the Rodopi Outsource service.


10.  Credit Card Processing


            This service is offered through the Rodopi Service Bureau Gateway.  It is a gateway service for processing credit cards over the Internet.  The advantage over competing services is based on its 15-times-faster processing time as compared to an ordinary modem. Because credit card processors do not offer to merchants a means by which to process cards over the Internet directly, business opportunities have been created for so-called credit card processing gateways.  RSB Gateway is one of the gateways benefiting from this opportunity. The service is fairly new and only one processor, Paymentech, is presently supported.  Five additional processors are being added to the gateway, bringing the total processors to six (6), covering approximately 95% of the U.S. market.  No significant revenues have been generated from this service to date.


11.  Clearing House Services


            A+Net acts as a Clearing House (CH) for the Rodopi Club.  Rodopi Club is a society of ISPs who are using Rodopi Software. Because it is advantageous for ISPs to share resources and to aggregate their buying power, A+Net manages both. Three programs are currently in place: (a) POP-Depot, whereby ISP share their dial-up ports by selling flat rate dial-up accounts to each other for resell to their customers; (b) Roaming, whereby ISP members of Rodopi Club share their dial up ports for purposes of roaming their customers, and (c) DSL Services provided by A+Net to all Rodopi Club members for resale.


12.  Advertising


            A+Net provides free e-mail and web hosting service at http://www.fiberia.com under the brand name FIBERIA.  Currently there are more than 100,000 users using these services. They generate more than 2,500,000 visits per month to FIBERIA sites. The growth has been constant at approximately 10% per month.


                        About 50% of these pages are used by A+Net to display its own banners. A+Net also sells over 1 million banner exposures per month through its agent “24/7 media Corporation.”  The list price is $10 per 1,000 displays. Agent commissions are approximately 50%.


B.        Products


13.  Rodopi 5.0


            Rodopi 5.0 is a provisioning, billing and customer care software for ISPs (www.rodopi.com). It is feature rich and completely web enabled.  Rodopi is one of the best software packages available for small and medium ISPs. Rodopi is being used by over 600 ISPs worldwide. Among the customers are “Cable and Wireless” (NYSE: CWP); Unisys (NYSE:UIS); Interliant (NASDAQ: INIT); Pegasus Communications (NASDAQ: PGTV); United Telesis; and DataFast Communications (Australia).


14.  Rodopi Modules


            Several Rodopi modules are being sold separately. These include Marketing Manager, Voice Messaging Server, VoIP server, FoIP server and DSL Link.


15.  Rodopi DN


            Rodopi DN is modified Rodopi 4.03 for domain name registrars.  Currently, Rodopi DN is being used by names4ever.com. Demand exists for this product from several other ICANN-accredited registrars for the product.  Orders are on hold pending the upgrade of the product so that it is compatible with Rodopi 5.0.


16.  Rodopi R (new and presently in beta testing)


            This product is a complete system for ICANN-accredited registries of TLDs and ccTLDs. The system includes RRP server, RRP client, Whois server, Zone file distribution, as well as publication, billing for both resellers (registrars) and consumers and several other useful modules.


17.  Third Party Products


            Abacus America presently resells numerous third party products for the convenience of its Internet and Rodopi software customers. These products include computer hardware, software, and networking hardware and software from name brand companies such as Intel, Compaq, Microsoft, Cisco, Lucent, and Sun. The revenues generated by such sales are only 5% of the total revenues.


C.        Customer Support


                        A+Net realizes that the quality of customer support is key to its success.  In order to provide quality customer support, A+Net implements:


                                    1.         Screening of employment candidates, including careful screening and testing for technical skills and knowledge.


                                    2.         Well-equipped working desks with everything needed for on-line diagnostic and resolution of the problem.


                                    3.         Rules and procedures for everyone to follow.


                                    4.         Multi-tiered, three-level support structure. When a problem cannot be resolved at the lower level, a ticket is created and the problem is escalated to a higher level.


                                    5.         Access to the billing system by both consumers and help desk personnel.


                                    6.         An advanced management system, allowing for easy on-line references and quick changes of passwords, user names, e-mails.  This system also allows changes to be made without reaching the servers, reducing the risk of damage to the server while allowing employees with a lower qualification to perform operations requiring higher skills.


                                    7.         Advanced ticket system.


8.                  Management monitoring system.


9.                  State of the art communication system


10.              Knowledge database.


            Abacus America is so confident that its customers will like the support they are receiving, it provides an unconditional money back guarantee good within 15 to 45 days from any purchase.

D.        Facilities


            A+Net has state of the art facilities in order to be able to provide quality Internet services. These facilities are equipped with everything needed to meet the highest professional standards. Two major telecommunication companies, Pacific Bell and MCI WorldComm, provide their own fiber optic cable and fiber optic equipment in the A+Net computer room. This is OC-12 equipment, capable of providing 12 T3 connections each, for a total of 24 T3 or 672 T1.  By way of comparison, there are many small and regional ISPs who are operating on a single T1 line.


                        All computer rooms are equipped with double floors, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), and 19” professional racks with telemetric sensors to monitor the temperature and humidity.  All servers are rack mountable.  Desktop machines are allowed in customer server areas only.  The Special Network Operations Center (NOC) monitors the status of the network on a 24/7 basis. Key system managers are paged if any parameter reaches the pre-determined threshold level.  Graphic displays show the status of all servers and act as a backup for the monitoring of service personnel.


D13.1.3           Past Business Operations / Entity History


            Abacus America has no business operations prior to its formation on July 1, 1992.  From 1992 through 1995, Abacus America operated as one entity and was involved in computer networking and computer system integration. Since 1995, Abacus America has operated its two divisions, A+Net and Rodopi Software.


D13.1.4    Registry / Database / Internet-Related Experience and Activities

A.        Registrar Experience


            Since 1995, Abacus America has been completely focused on Internet-related services (A+Net) and software development for the Internet industry (Rodopi Software).


            Abacus America was the fourth (4th) ICANN-accredited TLD registrar following the conclusion of the test bed period in 1999 (the ninth (9th) registrar accredited worldwide). It has since operated under the brand name “names4ever” (www.names4ever.com).  During that time, Abacus America has registered nearly 90,000 domain names.


            In order to better facilitate the process of registering domain names, Abacus America developed its own RRP client software, as well as a complete system including “Whois” server and a billing module. Furthermore, Abacus America developed special searching tools for domain names, providing consumers with information about available names, taken names, ownership of each name, as well as suggestions for available synonyms related to the desired name when it was not available.


            Abacus America also developed PIRIN, an XML based Registrar-Partner protocol for domain name registration, in order to benefit from the marketing opportunities offered by resellers. To facilitate PIRIN implementation on resellers side Abacus America offers free API for C and Perl programmers as well as complete solutions for implementing PIRIN in CGI’s. PIRIN specifications and API are freely downloadable from the www.names4ever.com website.  It can be easily incorporated with any existing software. Extensive examples and samples are provided to make the integration easy.


            Rodopi DN is a special modification of the company’s own flagship software product Rodopi specifically designed for domain names registrars. In addition to domain name registration through RRP client, Rodopi DN offers complete billing and customer care solution. Rodopi DN supports automated DNS zone files generation for newly registered domain names as option for free parking. The Registrar’s Whois server is included in Rodopi DN package.


B.        Internet Experience


            Abacus America is focused entirely on Internet services and products. One hundred percent (100%) of company’s activities center upon Internet services and products.


                        Internet Services (the A+Net division) generate about 80% of corporate revenues and consist of Internet connectivity, web hosting, e-commerce, server co-location and clearinghouse services.  Details about the services are listed above in Section D13.1.2 relating to Current Business Operations.


                        Internet Products (the Rodopi Software division) generate about 15% of the corporate revenues. The main product is the proprietary software called Rodopi. Rodopi is a provisioning, billing and customer care software package for the Internet industry.  Over 600 ISP worldwide are using Rodopi software.  Among them are Cable and Wireless, Unisys, Interliant, DataFast (Autralia) etc.  Details about this product are also provided in Section D13.1.2 relating to Current Business Operations


C.        Registry Experience


                        Abacus America has been in preparation for over two years to become one of the new TLD Registries. As part of this preparation the company developed Rodopi R and is currently in beta testing of this software package.  As described above, Rodopi R is a special software system designed specifically for TLD Registries. It includes RRP server (implementing latest RRP 1.1.0 as specified in RFC-2832), Whois server, DNS zone file generation and secure distribution system, billing module, security, backup and other helpful modules.

                        Abacus America is prepared to expand its beta testing of Rodopi R with other ICANN-accredited registrars and to utilize the software package for commercial TLD registrations once Abacus America is approved to be one of the new TLD Registries.

D.        Database Experience


                        Abacus America has extensive database experience. It employs 10 software developers, each of whom is proficient with SQL databases. Such experience spans well beyond academic knowledge and into real practical commercial applications. Over 600 ISPs worldwide are using Rodopi Software, which is based on a Microsoft® SQL Server.  For over four years, A+Net has been offering commercial web hosting plans with built-in database services.  A+Net is also servicing hundreds of customers with database-enabled plans. In this regard, the database knowledge is not only the prerogative of the software engineers, but also extends to the system engineers and support staff as well.


E.        Automated Service Provisioning


                        A+Net was among the first ISPs back in 1995 to offer “instant account activation” to its customers for both dial-up and web hosting services.  It was able to achieve this through completely automated provisioning offered by Rodopi Software, the software package that was developed in-house.


                        Today, the automated provisioning is an integral part of Rodopi Software. Complex setup allows the product to initiate automated provisioning on a variety of remote servers through a technique called “event scripts.” The event scripts can be managed by Rodopi remotely and can be executed on variety of platforms (NT, Unix, Solaris, Linux, etc.). Rodopi controls various services like DNS, RADIUS, Email, Web, etc. through its event scripts system.


D13.1.5           Mission


            Abacus America is committed to providing quality Internet services to consumers, businesses and resellers.  By becoming a Registry for the new TLDs, Abacus America will contribute to the diversity of the Internet and will provide the Internet community with more choices, currently not available in a reliable and secure manner, while working to protect the intellectual property rights of third parties.  In addition to the currently used RRP protocol, Abacus Registry will offer to registrars an XML based Registry-Registrar protocol that is easy to parse and validate.  To ensure high reliability and faster activation of domain names, the Abacus Registry will use Dynamic DNS to modify zone files of all DNS servers for the domains it manages. Abacus Registry intends to implement new features like XML formatted Whois response when corresponding Internet draft becomes RFC.


D13.1.6           Management


Mr. Ivan Vachovsky, President and CEO


Objective: To lead A+Net to prosperity to the benefit of its shareholders.




Technology – Extensive knowledge of computer hardware, networks and software and all related technologies.  Has “hands on” experience as software developer and hardware designer.


Management – Occupied top-level managerial positions since 1985.  Has “hands on” experience with managing of business development, marketing, human resources, financial. Has experience in various business legal activities like: business incorporation, copyright issues, Internet related laws and regulations, real estate lease (on both ends as a landlord and as a tenant), government regulations of communications FCC, SEC registration and reporting process, regulation bodies for the Internet like ICANN etc. Has experience in setting up corporate policies as a member of board of directors of various multimillion-dollar corporations as well as chairman of the board of ABACUS since 1989.


Writing - Author of one book and numerous articles. Writes most of the corporate rules, procedures, business plans and other documents. Prepares all corporate contracts and agreements to be reviewed and completed by corporate lawyers.


Professional experience:


ABACUS America Inc., dba A+Net                                      1992 - current


Owner, Founder, President – Started the company in 1992 with 1 employee and 100 sq. foot office. In 2000, the Company has 70+ employees, three offices and total space of more than 20,000 sq. feet. Developed all major strategies for the Company including Products, Marketing, Sales, Human Resources and Finance. Worked with other key officers of the Company to implement those strategies and to achieve the goals set. Major accomplishments include:



ABACUS Trade, Ltd.                                                                        1989 - 1992


Owner, Founder, President – Started the company out of an apartment in Sofia, Bulgaria. Within 3 years, the company reached revenues of up to $20 million. Developed all major strategies for the Company including Products, Marketing, Sales, Human Resources and Finance. Worked with other key officers of the Company to implement those strategies and to achieve the goals set. Moved to the U.S. in 1992 and left the Bulgarian company to family members. The company is still operational and prosperous.


Bulgarian Government                                                                      1985 - 1989


Director, Counselor – Advised Bulgarian Government on a variety of technological issues. The positions held provided significant power and management experience during years of strongly centralized and government-run economy. As a board of directors member, directly supervised and influenced the management decision of multimillion dollar companies like ISOT (computers), INCOMS (communications), KAM (factory automation), KATP (factory and design automation) and BalkanCar (world’s largest fork lift truck manufacturer).


Central Institute for Computers (CIIT), Sofia, Bulgaria                 1973 – 1985


Researcher, Senior Researcher, Project Manager – Developed computers, software and peripherals compatible with IBM PC line of computers and DEC PDP-11 and VAX lines of computers. As a project manager and team leader, managed groups of developers as large as 200 research engineers, technicians and support personnel. Worked with peers in major manufacturing plants to introduce the newly developed products into mass production.





High School Diploma, Graduated in 1969 with honors, best of the class, gold medal.

MS Electronic Engeneering, Technical University, Sofia, Graduated in 1975 with honors.

Ph.D. Applied Mathematics, Technical University, Sofia 1980                                      




Outdoor sports - Skiing, Wind Surfing, Fishing


Mr. Arthur R. Ekroos, Vice President Business Development, Sales and Marketing


Mr. Ekroos is a versatile professional with over 20 years experience managing business units including sales, marketing, product development, engineering and manufacturing.  Products he has been responsible for include POS Terminals, Software Programs, Transaction Network Communications systems, Interactive Voice Response systems, Telecommunications systems incorporating both voice and data, and RF Wireless Networking equipment (UHF, VHF & Spread Spectrum).  He is adept at working with customers and in house personnel to define and deliver products to the marketplace.


Since joining Abacus, he has forged alliances with Ascend, Lucent, Cisco, Microsoft, Intel, Nortel Networks, Diamond Multi media, Call Technologies, Open Port, Funk Software, Vircom and NetSurfer relative to both  A+Net Internet and Rodopi Software.  This will bring in substantial business in the future.  Some of these alliances include joint product development, marketing and sales programs.


Prior to joining Abacus America, he was the President of RF Neulink, a division of RF Industries, where he set up a sales distribution network, changed the marketing direction and increased revenues by 100%.  In addition he forged alliances with Motorola, SRI, SAIC and Torro resulting in orders in excess of $5 million and long term projections of more than $35 million.   At the same time profit margins were increased by more than 20% through outsourcing and redistribution of tasks.


Previous positions held by Mr. Ekroos include President of Autogenics Systems, Inc. in Berkley California, where he returned the company to profitability and negotiated the sale of the company.  He was a Vice President at Saber Equipment Corp. where he formed alliances with major oil companies and successfully negotiated with several state agencies, including the California Air Resource Board.  He was recruited to Alta Technology as a Vice President where he setup sales distribution in the US, Canada and South America, and sold computer based products and systems to banks and state agencies.  At Periphonics Corporation he became Vice President and General Manager of a division of the company after serving in several capacities from Engineering Manager to Director of Marketing to Senior Director of Operations.


Mr. Ekroos holds a BSEE from the Polytechnic University and has taken numerous courses from the Wharton School, the American Management Association and Stevens Institute of Technology.


Abacus America, Inc.                         San Diego, California                             9/98 – Present

Vice President, Business Development, Sales & Marketing


RF Industries, RF Neulink division   San Diego, California                             1/97 – 8/98



Saber Equipment Corp.                      California / Connecticut             1/90 - 12/96

Vice President


Alta Technology                                 Stamford, Connecticut                           8/82 - 12/89

Vice President


Autogenic Systems Inc.                      Berkeley, California                               2/81-8/82



Periphonics Corporation                    California / New York                           1/71-2/81

Vice President and General Manager                                                                 11/78-2/81

Senior Director of Operations                                                                             9/76-11/78

Director of Marketing                                                                                        3/74-9/76

Engineer / Engineering Manager                                                             1/71-3/74




Mr. Robert A. Degan, Director


Nov., 1998 - Dec., 1999             CISCO SYSTEMS, INC. – Public Company

            Manchester, NH

General Manager – Enhanced Services & Migration Unit (Formerly Summa Four)

Increased the Summa Four Business Unit’s (ESMBU revenue to $125M.

Summa Four, Inc. was acquired by Cisco Systems, Inc. in November, 1998.


1997 - Nov., 1998                   SUMMA FOUR, INC. – Public Company                                          Manchester, NH

                                                Chairman, President & Chief Executive Officer


Summa Four is a leading provider of open, programmable switching platforms that enable telecommunication service providers worldwide to build intelligent, flexible networks that support the rapid deployment of new wireline and wireless services.  Summa Four is a $50M Company.


1989 - 1996                             TYLINK CORPORATION – Private Company                                                                   Norton, MA

                                                President, Chief Executive Officer & Director


Design, manufacture and market dedicated and switched Digital Access Products to users of high speed digital networks.  Tylink is a $20M Company experiencing rapid growth in the expanding network access of the public and private communications marketplace.  Tylink merged with Sync Research, Inc. in 1996.


1985 - 1989                             AMNET, INC. – Private Company                                      Framingham, MA

                                                President, Chief Executive Officer & Director


Data communication networking Company providing Standard X.25 packet switching solutions sold directly to end users or through third-party sales channels.  First two years spent developing the product line; following two years devoted to building the Company to greater that $6M annual revenues run rate with high gross margins and profits.


1983 - 1985                             DATA SWITCH CORPORATION – Public Company                                             Norwalk, MA

                                                President, Chief Executive Officer & Director


Developer of Matrix Switches and Control Systems.  Increased sales from $18M to $36M.  Acquired Channel Extender and Network Performance Measurement businesses.  Won $20M Unisys OEM Contract.


1977 - 1983                             APPLIED DIGITAL DATA SYSTEMS – Public Company                  Haupauge, NY

                                                President, Chief Executive Officer & Director


Developer of display terminals and small business systems.  Increased revenues from $12M to $72M.  Introduced 16-Bit Micro Running PICK and built it into a $25M business.  Increased earnings per share year to year.


Applied Digital Data Systems was acquired by NCR in 1980.


1974 - 1977                             PERIPHONICS CORPORATION – Private Company                                            Bohemia, NY

                                                President, Chief Executive Officer & Director


$11M Manufacturer of Front Ends and Audit Response Products.  Grew Company from $3M in Sales with increasing profits.


1969 - 1974                             NATIONAL CSS, INC. – Public Company                                                  Wilton, CT


1772 - 1974                             Senior Vice President

1970 - 1972                             Vice President, Operations – International Marketing

1969 - 1970                             Director, Operations


$32M public time-sharing Company.  Responsible for Engineering, Marketing, Sales and Operations.  Increased earnings per share year to year.


AFFILIATIONS                    Serves on the Board of Directors for:

Lancast, Inc., Nashua, NH (privately held company)

Gensym Corporation, Cambridge, MA (public company)

Flexi International, Shelton, CT (public company)

Overland Data, San Diego, CA (public company)




Mrs.  Lilian T. Vachovsky, CFO


Objective: To lead A+Net to prosperity to the benefit of its shareholders.




Management – Occupied top-level managerial positions since 1989.  Has “hands on” experience with management of operations and financials. Member of the board of directors since 1989. Familiar with the business and labor laws. Represented the company in numerous small claim court and labor board proceedings.


Finance –  10 years hands on experience in all aspects of corporate financials – general ledger, A/R, A/P, Inventory, Purchases, Cost of Goods sold, Statements of Operations, Balance Sheets, Cash Flow projections and analysis, reports to IRS, tax forms and schedules, payroll.


Programming – Has past experience in programming for IBM PC computers at system (OS) and application levels.


 Professional experience:


ABACUS America Inc., dba A+Net,                                                             1993 - now     


CFO, COO – Responsible for implementing major strategies for the Company, including Finance, Products, Sales and Operations. Works with other key officers of the Company to implement those strategies and to achieve the goals set. Prepares monthly, quarterly and annual financial statements and corporate tax returns in collaboration with the corporate CPA.  Monitors and manages day to day operations of Sales, Customer Support, Service and Accounting departments. The managers of all those departments report directly to Lilian.


ABACUS Trade, Ltd. , Sofia, Bulgaria                                                         1989 - 1993


CFO, COO – Was responsible for implementing all major strategies for the Company including but not limited to Finance, Sales and Operations. Worked with other key officers of the Company to implement those strategies and to achieve the goals set. Prepared monthly, quarterly and annual financial statements and corporate tax returns in collaboration with the corporate CPA. Monitored and managed day to day operations of Sales, Customer Support, Service and Accounting departments. The managers of all those departments report directly to Lilian. Worked with Insurance companies on various claims. Represented the company at financial audit by the tax authorities in Bulgaria.


Central Institute for Computers (CIIT), Sofia, Bulgaria                             1980 – 1989


Software Developer, Project Manager – Developed computer software for IBM PC line of computers. Was recognized and promoted to senior position only after one year, and ahead of other candidates with many years of experience. Strong leadership and ability to lead teams of 3 to 10 programmers and support personnel to complete software tasks in time. Conducted computer software training for engineers and managers. Translated thousands of pages of technical documentation from English to Bulgarian.




High School Diploma, Graduated in 1970 from

English Language High School Plovdiv, Bulgaria

MS Electronic Engeneering, Graduated in 1976

Technical University, Sofia, Bulgaria                             




Family life, Gardening




D13.1.7           Staff/Employees


                        Abacus America employs 74 (seventy four) full time employees. Over 30% of them have BS degrees and more than 15% have MS degrees.  One has PhD in applied mathematics.


                        The Company has been expanding since its inception in 1992.  The company initially started with only one employee and 100 sq. feet of office space.  Today, the company occupies over 20,000 sq. feet of offices in three locations.  Management has proven its ability to expand the company’s operations as evidenced by the increase in both the number of employees and facilities required to continue the viability of these operations.  The company has been continuously profitable since 1994.


                        Training is provided to all employees as needed. Supervisors provide training to junior level employees.  University courses, corporate training, self-study, and certification programs provide training to top-level employees.  Several employees have been through training, exams and certifications with Cisco, Lucent, 3COM, University of California (UCSD, UCI), Microsoft and Grossmont College.


                        Abacus America believes that its employees are its greatest assets and treats them accordingly.  Benefits to all employees include medical, dental, paid vacation, and retirement plan.  Over 40% of the employees have stock options.


D13.1.8           Commercial General Liability Insurance


            Abacus America has general liability insurance coverage through Chubb Insurance Group.  Chubb is one of the largest insurers in the United States and has top ratings (Aa3, A++, AAA) from Moody’s, A.M. Best and Standard & Poor, respectively. (More details regarding Chubb’s ratings at: http://www.chubb.com/businesses/ surety/ratings.html#top).  Abacus America carries policy limits of $3,000,000. This limit can be raised as necessary and, if selected as a TLD Registry, Abacus America will be pleased to discuss raising this limit if ICANN feels that such action is necessary.


            Abacus America has been in good standing with Chubb and has not filed any claim under its insurance policy in the last two years (the time period which Abacus America has been insured by Chubb).


D13.2              Business Plan for Proposed Registry Operations


D13.2.1           Services to be Provided


                        By this proposal, Abacus America is applying to be accredited by ICANN to provide the following TLD Registry Services:


·          Domain name registration for one or more of the new TLDs through ICANN-accredited registrars;


·          Management of the Registry database(s);


·          DNS zone file generation and publication;


·          Access to Whois services;


·          Billing and collecting services;


·          Data backup;


·          Intellectual property protection; and


·          Technical support to Registrars.



                        Abacus America will not provide registration services directly to consumers and businesses.  Rather, all registration will be accomplished through ICANN- accredited registrars.  In addition, Abacus America will not offer its Internet services (described in D13.1.2 above) to consumers and businesses who register domain names with the Registry in order to avoid competing with the underlying registrars, many of whom provide these same services to their clients.


            Abacus America is assessing the feasibility of providing domain name auctions and directory services, pending approval of its Registry application by ICANN.


            The Internet is very dynamic and Abacus America anticipates that many new service needs may arise in both the near and long term.  Abacus America’s main philosophy regarding service is always to anticipate the market and provide services which are most useful to its customers in the most efficient and cost-effective manner. Abacus America’s main motivation for introducing such services is to improve customer satisfaction while seeking to protect the interests of our affiliated registrars.  Abacus America has spent years developing a positive relationship with many members of our distribution channels and does not wish to jeopardize these relationships in any way.  Whatever services are required to main these positive relationships will be provided by Abacus America.


D13.2.2           Revenue Model


            As a for-profit organization, a steady revenue stream is an important part of Abacus America’s continued growth and development.  Abacus America has therefore spent considerable time studying the revenue model it would operate under as a Registry so that, if selected, it could maintain sufficient revenues to keep the Registry services profitable, while maximizing the appeal of the Registry in an increasingly competitive market.


            Abacus America intends to offer domain name registrations at the rate of $6.00 per domain name per year.  This rate will include all of the above-mentioned Registry Services.  In addition, Abacus America will monitor the domain name registration market and will react accordingly in order to stay competitive with the services being offered, without jeopardizing the quality of these services, the reliability of the system, security concerns and intellectual property rights. 


            Abacus America has traditionally offered competitive prices for its services, but its prices are never lowered to the point that it would sacrifice quality of the services offered.  The company intends to apply the same pricing model to the Registry Services.  In addition, Abacus America will be sensitive to the demand in the market.  If it encounters strong demand for its Registry Services, this factor may tend to slightly increase the price per domain name.  The reverse situation may also cause Abacus America to lower its price.  Under either circumstance, Abacus America has calculated its projections based on the $6.00 domain name figure, but has also anticipated lower revenues streams in its projections to ensure that it will be profitable under various financial scenarios.


            Additional revenues may be generated from the ancillary services mentioned above – such as directory services and domain name auctions.  For the purposes of the financial projections, however, these additional services have not been factored into the revenue and business models.


D13.2.3           Market


            Abacus America employs the horizontal market model in most of its Internet services.  It will apply the same approach for its Registry business.


                        In order to select the TLDs with most appeal to the public and which users felt were most needed to diversify the DNS, Abacus America conducted an extensive on-line survey involving over 150,000 Internet users.  The results of the survey are available for review at: http://www.names4ever.com/domaincontest.html.  Abacus America then cross-referenced its results with other market data collected by the company in preparation for filing this application. Abacus America’s application therefore represents some of the most frequently mentioned TLDs as well as those which would likely find the most market acceptance.


                        Abacus America anticipates the market for each of the proposed new domain names to include the registration of approximately one million names per quarter.  This number is significantly lower than the numbers for .com, .net and .org domain names, which run at a registration rate of approximately 3-4 million per quarter. The reasons which underlie Abacus America’s lower estimates are the beliefs that (1) regardless of what new TLDs are approved, the original TLDs (especially .com) will continue to enjoy the strongest demand for the foreseeable future; and (2) the introduction of several new TLDs at the same time will tend to segment the registration market and disperse the concentration of registrants which have much more limited options under the existing TLDs.  On the positive side, however, new TLDs and increased competition among both TLDs and the new registrars which service them will almost certainly result in lower registration prices across all TLDs.


                        Notwithstanding these factors, the issuance of new TLDs, the increased competition among registrars and registries, and the drop in the price of registering a domain name will spark new demand for these new domain names.  It is for this reason that Abacus America still expects a substantial amount of registrations as indicated above.


D13.2.4           Marketing Plan


                        Abacus America plans to register the new TLDs through ICANN- accredited registrars and their network of resellers, partners and affiliates.  In this regard, the company anticipates a significant portion of the marketing to be conducted by the registrars themselves, as well as their resellers, partners and affiliates.


                        The mere act of issuing the new TLDs will attract significant press coverage.  This coverage will help in the initial stages to establish the new recognition for these TLDs, as well as the Registry which will support them. 


                        As competition among registrars and registries increases, Abacus America intends to gradually increase its marketing efforts in order to support the name recognition of its TLDs.   The financial projections have taken this fact into account, and the company is prepared to spend roughly twenty percent (20%) of its total registry revenues on marketing the registry and the supported TLDs.


                        Because Abacus America will not be selling domain names directly to consumers (rather, as stated more fully above, it will be relying exclusively on ICANN-accredited registrars), its marketing efforts will be targeted at brand (name) recognition of its TLDs, rather than direct sales of registrations.  If approved by ICANN, the company has planned to hire a marketing and advertising firm to address the proper positioning, branding and marketing of the TLDs which it supports.  At the very least, this program will include mass marketing campaigns relying on such media as TV, radio and Internet advertising.


                        Registrars will be marketed through direct mail.  Moreover, the company will prepare ready-made marketing materials like banners, logos and print ads which will be provided to registrars free of charge for their own use, as well as for use by their resellers, partners and affiliates.


            As a point which differentiates the company from others who are marketing their services or brand names, Abacus America enjoys significant influence in the Internet industry because of the over 600 ISPs using Rodopi software.  The company will use this opportunity by adapting Rodopi software to automatically register the new TLD through one of the accredited registrars.


            Moreover, in addition to traditional North American markets, Abacus America plans on targeting specific overseas markets, which, in the company’s opinion have been underserved by existing TLDs.


D13.2.5           Estimated Demand for Registry Services


The estimates below are based on:


(a)                the demand for currently available TLDs;

(b)               Abacus America’s survey of over 150,000 Internet users; and

(c)                forecasts for Internet growth by Forrester Research, Jupiter Communications and International Data Corporation (IDC).



Table 1. Estimated Demand for New TLD Registrations – Per Month.



90% estimate

50% estimate

10% estimate


























The company anticipates a one- to three-month “ramp up” period for the projected numbers to take effect.



D13.2.6           Resources Required to Meet the Demand


A.        Financial Resources


1.         Initial Investment (Equipment, Software and Setup Fees)


Table 2. Initial investment in U.S. Dollars



90% estimate

50% estimate

10% estimate

Initial investment $





Not included is the cost of software development. Abacus America has already invested and developed Rodopi R – complete suite of software for TLD Registry operations.


2.         Ongoing Expense (Co-Location Space, Maintenance,

Support Registrars, Billing Registrars)


Table 3. Monthly Expenses in U.S.Dollars Per Month



90% estimate

50% estimate

10% estimate

Co-location space
























Software dvelopment




Hardware upgrades




Software upgrades




Legal (outsourced)




ICANN contribution




Office space and utilities









Software development expense includes the expense for continuously updating and improving Rodopi R – the company’s software suite for Registry operations. Software upgrade expense includes the upgrades of third party software like OS, SQL Database etc.  Marketing expenses are percentage of the revenues and are not shown here.


B.        Human Resources


Table 4. Human resources



90% estimate

50% estimate

10% estimate

Billing clerks




Support technicians




Support engineers




Software engineers








Computer technicians










Legal work will be outsourced.  Corporate management resources will be required as well, which are not reflected in the table.


            Abacus America is confident that it will be able to promptly fill all of the above positions by hiring new employees and restructuring its own work force of 74 full-time employees.


C.        Equipment and Software


            Abacus America will purchase the equipment necessary to operate the registry from readily available sources like Compaq, Sun and Cisco.  The company has been purchasing and installing such equipment for many years and is well experienced with hardware needs and installation. For the last three years Abacus has been an authorized Compaq reseller and service provider.  Abacus America does not anticipate any problems with the order of any of the following equipment and software, as may be required: 


                                    1.         Equipment


-           Compaq servers with RAID disc array, hot swappable hard drives, redundant power supply, hot swappable power supply, Ultra wide SCSI interface.  

-           Cisco® firewalls

-           Cisco® Switches (optional) if co-location provider does not provide multiple switched ports.

-                     Intel® “Netstructure” SSL accelerator


2.                  Software


            Software needs are divided into two categories: (a) standard third party software and (b) Rodopi R – the company’s own software package for TLD Registry operations. 


                                                a.         Standard Software


-           OS: Windows 2000 Datacenter Server, Windows 2000 Advanced Server, Sun Solaris 7;

-           Database: Microsoft® SQL Server 2000; and

-           DNS Server: latest version of BIND


                                    b.         Custom Software  - Rodopi R has already been developed and is presently in beta testing.  Its modules include:


                                    -           RRP server;

-           DNS zone files generation and secure distribution software;

-           Whois server;

-           Billing/provisioning software;

-           RRP client (to be distributed free to accredited registrars).



D.        Physical Plant


            Abacus America anticipates it will co-locate its equipment in four professionally managed data centers in the following geographic regions:


San Diego Supercomputer Center

U.S. West Coast

            U.S. East Coast



            Pending ICANN approval, Abacus America will immediately start negotiating these co-location spaces.  The company already has co-location space in the San Diego Supercomputer Center.  For the remaining three co-location spaces, Abacus America has several choices, including co-location arrangements with Exodus, AboveNet, Level3 Communications, Intel, GlobalCenter, Qwest and UUNet.  Anywhere from one-half to two full racks of space will be required in these spaces, all of which can be quickly negotiated on an as-needed basis.


            In sum, Abacus America has developed the key elements of its Registry operations as well as the application software for Registry operations, Rodopi R.  The remaining equipment, standard OS and standard database software which are needed, as well as the additional facilities, are easily added, while the company already has the required bandwidth many times over in its capacity as an ISP.  Having started preparing for its role as a registry over two years, Abacus America is ready to begin offering TLD Registry Services once it is approved by ICANN to do so.


D13.2.7           Acquiring the Necessary Systems and Facilities


A.        Equipment


            None of the equipment identified above is unique or difficult to obtain. Abacus America has been purchasing and installing such equipment since 1992.  The company has well established relations with all vendors, distributors and resellers.  It anticipates no more than a thirty (30) day turnaround time to obtain any additional equipment needed for its Registry Operations.


B.        Software OS


            All OS software needed to operate the registry is readily available for purchase at any time.  Turnaround would be approximately one to two weeks.


C.        Software Database


            Microsoft® SQL Server 2000 is available from Microsoft.  Because Abacus America is a Microsoft Solution Provider and Microsoft Partner, it will have no problems obtaining the necessary software and licenses for any Microsoft product.   It will take no longer than a week to obtain and implement these packages.


D.        Rodopi R


            This software package is immediately available from the company’s Rodopi Software division and includes all the necessary application software for running the Registry operations.  See it in action at: http://rodopi.abac.net


E.        Facilities


            Abacus America will co-locate its servers with professionally managed data centers in order to provide the level of security and reliability required for the Registry operations.  The company currently has co-location space in the San Diego Super Computer Center.  Pending Registry application approval by ICANN, Abacus America will immediately negotiate co-location space in the three other geographical locations listed above.  Turnaround time according to each of the co-location providers is approximately 15 days if any of the following co-location companies are used:  Exodus, AboveNet, Level3 Communications, GlobalCenter, Intel, Qwest and UUNet.


F.         Total Time to Start-Up


                        In sum, Abacus America can acquire all the necessary equipment, software, and facilities within 30 days following ICANN approval to operate new TLD Registry.


D13.2.8           Staff Size Expansion Capability


            Abacus America has grown from two employees in 1993 to 74 full-time employees in the year 2000.  The company has proven its ability to consistently expand its operations and has been steadily growing in number since its inception.


            Abacus America does not anticipate any problems in hiring the technical personnel, support staff, billable employees and low level management.  This would account for over 70% of the needed workforce. 


            For the hiring of any additional employees, which were needed, Abacus America would utilize the San Diego Union Tribune classified advertisements, which have been successfully utilized many times in the past.


                        Abacus America already has highly skilled executives and engineers in house who are capable of training new middle and lower level support, management and billing personnel.  For high level management and highly skilled software developers, the company has the option to divert some of its existing employees until new hires are brought up to speed.   Abacus America has already assigned two software engineers from its existing staff to preparing for full implementation of Registry operations.


                        Abacus America has also recently added 7,000 sq. feet of new leased space to its existing offices at 5266 Eastgate Mall, San Diego, California.  This space is more than adequate to accommodate the new operations, especially where the data center facilities will be outsourced (see Facilities, Section 13.2.7).


D13.2.9           Availability of Additional Management Personnel



            Abacus America recognizes the importance of proper management for the success of the business.  For this reason, it has already begun interviews to fill key positions in preparation for its operation as a Registry. 


            Furthermore, Abacus America is working with several recruiting agencies including Abacus Staffing to locate additional candidates for its management team.


D13.2.10         Term of Registry Agreement


            Abacus America believes than an initial four (4) year term is the minimum term to allow the company to receive the benefit of the long-term investments it has made in preparing for its role as a Registry, as well as the investments anticipated once Abacus America is approved by ICANN.  If a longer term can be negotiated with ICANN, Abacus America would obviously prefer to extend the term.  Otherwise, the company would like to enter into a four-year agreement with additional two- or four-year options available at the conclusion of the first term subject to Abacus America’s status as a Registry in good standing.


D13.2.11         Expected Costs Associated with the Operation of the Proposed Registry


            Expected costs for operation of the registry are shown in detail in Attachment 1 – Financial Projections.  Abacus America has projected expenses on a monthly basis for the four-year projection period.  The expense projections also include general and administrative expenses, as well as expenses related to payroll, marketing, depreciation and interest. 


            The cost of equipment, co-location services and bandwidth are shown as “Cost of Goods Sold” in the projected “Income statements.”   ICANN dues are projected to be $200,000 per year and are included in the “General and Administrative” expenses category.  All numbers set forth in Attachment 1 are in one thousand dollar increments ($1,000s).


D13.2.12         Expected Revenue Associated with the Operation of the Proposed Registry


            Detailed revenue projections are shown in Attachment 1 – Financial Projections.  Projected revenues are shown in separate tables by month for the four-year projection period.  These figures are also reflected in the projected income statements, which have been prepared in a pro forma basis for the same four-year period. All numbers set forth in Attachment 1 are in one thousand dollar increments ($1,000s).



D13.2.13         Capital Requirements


                        The registry business typically experiences short sales cycle and low levels of outstanding accounts receivable.  These factors are very favorable from a cash flow perspective and reduce the need for large up front capital investment.


            Abacus America has already invested significant resources in software development. It is estimated that Abacus America has invested over 50 man years in the development of Rodopi family of software products. The value of the product line is estimated in the millions of dollars.  The company estimates that others may need to invest from $5 to $10 million dollars to develop or acquire a complete software suite for registry operations like Rodopi R.


            Provided that Rodopi R is completely operational, capital is needed only for equipment and co-location, which places Abacus America in a competitive position both fiscally and technically compared with competitors who do not have the software.


            Abacus America’s financial projections (See Attachment 1 – Financial Projections) show that a $500,000 capital investment will be sufficient to begin full operations and quickly shift from capital funded to cash flow funded operations.  This transition is quite visible based on cash flow projections during FY 2001, at which point the original capital funding “dries up” to approximately $60,000 before quickly recovering to $777,000 within two months.  Steady and continued growth is projected from that point forward.




                        Abacus America has over $1,300,000 available in cash funds to support this project.  In other words, Abacus America has secured 2.5 times more than the amount of capital needed pursuant to its own financial projections.  To provide additional support and financial security, Abacus America has obtained a commitment from its two banking relationships – Wells Fargo Bank and First USA Bank – for an additional bank loan of up to $1,500,000 specifically dedicated to its registry operations if the need arises.


D13.2.14         Business Risks and Opportunities


            Abacus America is accustomed to taking advantage of business opportunities, which are accompanied, by moderate amounts of risk.  The risks presented by this business opportunity include the following:


·        increased competition in the market could lead to reduced revenues from domain name registrations;

·        increased competition will require more marketing funds to be spent on establish domain name recognition in the marketplace;

·        demand for one or more new TLDs could outweigh demand for others / decreased demand in TLDs offered by the registry;

·        government and political intervention due to the global nature of the business and economic issues related to operation of the DNS;

·        malicious actions from third parties to attempt hack into or destroy the registry through means not presently anticipated, resulting in higher security and/or hardware requirements.


            Based on the Financial Projections described in Attachment 1, the business opportunity presented far outweighs the potential risks that may be involved.  All of the market research conducted by Abacus America indicates that demand for the proposed TLDs will easily overcome any issues related to increased competition, requirements for additional capital outlays and the potential risk of a decrease in demand within the registration market as a whole.  Moreover, as described above in Section  D.13.2.13, Abacus America has already committed $1.3 million in cash (2.5 times the cash it projects it will need in total capital expenditures to become cash flow solvent), while securing a bank loan for another $1.5 million dedicated solely to its registry operations should additional funds be required.


            Finally, this is a business opportunity with which Abacus America has a great deal of experience.  It has already been operating as a registrar for the last two years, having been the fourth ICANN-accredited registrar following the initial test bed period.  In addition, it has been preparing for over two years for its role as a registry, and in the process has created software specifically designed to operate its registry operations.


            As an Internet services company which has been profitable and continuously growing for the last five years, Abacus America is fully prepared to meet and exceed all challenges which it faces as it begins its registry operations.  To Abacus America, this is an opportunity for the company to continue doing what it does best, to benefit from its hard work and preparation for this next phase of its development, and to provide new services to the Internet community in the same manner it has done since its inception.


D13.2.15         Registry Failure Provisions


            From a technological standpoint, Abacus America is planning on using redundant technology and connections along with properly trained employees and appropriate rules and procedures so that it minimizes the risk of a failure to a minimum. The technical provisions for minimizing the risk of failure are described in more details in section D15.2.  The organizational provisions for recovery from potential failure are described in section D15.2.13.  Back up data will be send to ICANN on a regular basis as an extra precaution. Details are available in paragraph D12.5.7.


            From a financial perspective, if the Registry operations fail due to lack of demand or for any other non-technical reason, Abacus America will continue servicing existing domain name holders for the negotiated period despite any losses this may cause the company.  (As noted above, however, Abacus America has already put aside 2.5 times the needed capital to operate the registry and secured a back-up loan for an equivalent amount.) 


            Despite the significant amount of financing described above, if the fiscal health of the company was in any way to endanger the stability of the domain names registered under the registry, Abacus America would immediately notify ICANN and the Department of Commerce of its intent to sell or assign the remaining years on its registry term subject to the assignment provisions of the registry agreement and subject further to the approval of these entities.  During the interim period and pending any such transaction, Abacus America would continue to operate the registry and would borrow the back-up funds identified above to continue to operate the registry until it could be transferred in an orderly manner to a new registry operator in a manner acceptable to ICANN and the Department of Commerce.


D13.3.             Pro-Forma Financial Projections


            All pro forma financial statements and projections are attached to this proposal as Attachment 1 (volume 2).  They are available as an MS Excel file as well.


            All projections are made for a four-year operating period. All numbers set forth in Attachment 1 are in one thousand dollar increments ($1,000s).  Most of the projections are made on month to month basis.  Where appropriate, they are made on a quarterly basis.  The balance sheets presented are projected on an annual basis.

D13.3.1 Projected sales.


            Projected sales come mainly from domain names registration  trough Registrars. Projected price is $6 per name per year in the beginning dropping to $4.50 at the end of the projected 4 years period.

            Additional services are auctioning domain names. Auctions will take place in two cases a) in the beginning of the operations to level the plain field and create equall opportunity for everyone to purchase sought after domain names and b) for abandoned and not paid for domain names.

            Additional services include free directory services. Sales will be generated by selling advertisement space.


D13.3.2 Projected expenses


            Included are all operating expenses. The expense for ICANN payments is included in “General and administrative” expenses. The server co-location and bandwidth expenses are not included. Those are reflected as “cost of good sold” in the Income statements.


D13.3.3  Projected cash flow


                        Cash flow is positive and reflects the nature of the business with short sales cycle, low A/R and no inventory. The strong cash flow allows for setting up and initiating the operations with relatively low start-up capital of $500,000 projected.


D13.3.3 Projected Income statements


                        The cost of goods sold is relatively low, which is not unusual for services oriented business. Most of the expenses are reflected in “Operating expenses” See D13.3.2 above.


D13.3.4. Projected balance sheets


                        Projected start up capital is $500,000. Due to the strong earnings there is no need for additional capital. All figures in thousands US dollars. Due to rounding some numbers may not balance with difference being not more than 1.



D13.4 Supporting documentation



D13.4.1. Organizational documents










D13.4.2. References



D13.4.3. Annual report


Please click to see attached documents.






D13.4.5. Proof of Insurance









D15.1  Detailed Description of the Registry Operator’s Technical Capabilities.


                        As described in extensive detail in Section D13.1.2 (Current Business Operations), Abacus America has been involved in computer system integration since 1992. It has been involved in network integration even before the Internet was a commonly used medium.


                        Abacus America has been a fully operational Internet Services Provider (ISP) for over 5 years under the brand name A+Net ( www.aplus.net ) . A+Net is a diversified, facilities- based ISP.  It has built its own data center from the ground up and manages a complex physical setup including:


·        maintenance of over 100 servers,

·        Cisco® firewall technology,

·        BIND DNS servers,

·        routers,

·        switches,

·        bandwidth management and monitoring,

·        data back-up,

·        restore of data from back-up,

·        several databases,

·        setup of variety of software, and

·        building servers.


                        In addition to strong business relationships with these manufacturers, Abacus America has strong in-house expertise with equipment and software from the following companies:


·        Intel (ISP Partner)

·        Microsoft (Certified Solution Provider, Partner)

·        Sun Microsystems

·        Cisco (Partner)

·        Lucent (Partner)

·        Compaq/DEC (Authorized service provider)


                        Abacus America has a team of network engineers with strong knowledge about the Internet and related network technologies.  In addition, Abacus America employs a core group of over 40 technicians and engineers and 10 software developers who work together to successfully manage the company’s technical operations.


                        Abacus America has 100% ownership of the Rodopi Software division. Rodopi is a provisioning, billing and customer care suit of software specifically designed for the Internet industry.  Over 600 ISPs worldwide are using Rodopi to run their operations. Thousands of servers worldwide are linked to Rodopi for automated provisioning and billing.  The Rodopi service team processes hundreds of service tickets each and every day.


Among the Rodopi users are “Cable and Wireless” (NYSE: CWP); Unisys (NYSE:UIS); Interliant (NASDAQ: INIT); Pegasus Communications (NASDAQ: PGTV); United Telesis; and DataFast Communications (Australia).


            Rodopi Software has developed software specifically targeted at TLD registry and registrars operations, with modules that include:


·        Rodopi DN – a software suite for TLD Registrar operations, presently in operation and used by names4ever.com, the ICANN-accredited registrar dba of Abacus America.  The product is now ready to be marketed to other registrars.


·        PIRIN – an open source protocol, interface and software for TLD resellers. Over 400 resellers are using Rodopi or PIRIN to submit .com .net and .org domain names.


·        Rodopi R – a complete software suite for operating TLD registries. Includes RRP server, Whois server, DNS zone file generation and distribution, database, billing, zone file maintenance and utilities. You can take a test drive of Rodopi R at http://rodopi.abac.net


            Abacus America has experience with issues related to continuous operation, including:


·        Data back up and recovery

·        Outage prevention

·        Redundant systems

·        Reliability


                        In addition, Abacus America has the skills and technical employees to put together policies and procedures, as well as to train its employees in the implementation and adherence to these procedures.  Abacus America already offers technical support on a 24/7 basis, which supports over 150,000 of its Internet services customers.



D15.2  Technical Plan for the Proposed Registry Operations


D15.2.1           General Description of Proposed Facilities and Systems


                        The Abacus America Registry will operate at several locations.  The central location will be housed at the San Diego Supercomputer Center, La Jolla, CA.  The systems in use at the central location will include:


·        Registry Database Server

·        Registry RODOPI Server

·        Registry-Registrar Server (Shared Registration System)

·        One DNS top-level domain (TLD) server

·        Whois Database Server

·        Whois Server


            At least three other centers will host top-level DNS servers, located on the West and East coast of the United States, in addition to a server located in Europe. Projected locations at this time are:


a)      US West coast:


AboveNet, San Jose, CA I Facility

Three OC-48 (2.45 Gbps), five OC-12 (622 Mbps) and ten OC-3 (155 Mbps) connections link this site to the Internet.


b)      US East coast:

AboveNet, Vienna, VA I Facility
Four OC-48 (2.45 Gbps), three OC-12 (622 Mbps) and four OC-3 (155 Mbps) connections link this site to the Internet.


                 AboveNet Facilities:


Access to all server rooms is controlled by an access database; pass cards, and video surveillance. Guards monitor all areas within the co-location area and are protected by bullet-proof glass. Only those persons authorized by Abacus America, Inc. are allowed past this point. Bullet resistant glass, doors and walls, as well as security guards protect a single point of entry to co-location area 24 hours a day. All visits are logged against Abacus America’s access lists. Cardkey locks restrict equipment area access. Surveillance cameras located throughout the facility capture all activity to help ensure no unauthorized entry to protected areas.




The facility utilizes state-of-the-art continuous power supply (CPS) online generators. All power is run through the CPS generators before being passed into the facility, this builds up momentum in the high-efficiency turbine. In the event of a loss of power from the grid, the momentum in the turbine ensures continuous power while the back-up generators come on-line. The back-up diesel generator can power the facility at full power for approximately 40 hours before fuel re-supply is necessary.


The facility uses a Very Early Smoke Detection Alarm (VESDA) system. This system uses laser-scanning technology and is 4 times more sensitive than a typical smoke detector. In the event of a fire, this early warning system allows personnel to proactively search out the source of smoke and take immediate action before the fire has a chance to spread. The VESDA system is paired with the Fire Master 200 (FM200) fire suppression system, which suppresses the fire and does not damage electrical equipment. Backing up the FM200 is a pre-action dry pipe system zoned to release water only to the affected area


c)      Europe:
UUNet, London, UK Facility
Two OC-3 (155Mbps) connections link this site to the Internet.



The facility is secured via biometric hand scanners, electronic key access and Motion Detection System. Internal areas require electronic key access as well. Abacus America, Inc. cabinet will have separate key access. Security guards monitor the facility 24x7. Video surveillance cameras keep watch inside and outside the center.


The facility has Uninterrupted Power System (UPS) with redundant capacity, which allows maintenance to be performed on the system with no risk of a power outage. The back-up diesel generators can power the facility at full power for approximately 48 hours before fuel re-supply is necessary.


            The following is a detailed description of all systems, which will be used in the Registry operation.


A.        Central Location


1)      Registry Database Server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 4 GB of RAM, 4x36GB RAID level 5 disk array; running Microsoft® Windows 2000 Datacenter Server, Microsoft SQL Server 2000.


2)      Registry RODOPI Server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 2 GB of RAM, 36GB disk capacity, running Microsoft® Windows 2000 Advanced Server.


3)      Registry-Registrar Server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 2 GB of RAM, 36GB disk capacity, running Microsoft® Windows 2000 Advanced Server. Hardware SSL accelerator – Intel® NetStructure, provides industrial strength encryption.


4)      Top-level DNS server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 4 GB of RAM, 36GB disk capacity, running Sun Solaris 7 and latest version of BIND.


5)      Whois Server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 2 GB of RAM, 36GB disk capacity, running Microsoft® Windows 2000 Advanced Server.


6)      Whois Database Server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 2 GB of RAM, 4x36GB RAID level 5 disk array, running Microsoft® Windows 2000 Advanced Server



            All systems will be isolated into a separate LAN segment and protected by Cisco® firewall technology.  The Registry will be using multi-homed backbone connections and BGP routing.


B.        Additional DNS Server Locations


1)      Top-level DNS server: Compaq server, a dual Intel Pentium system with 4 GB of RAM, 36GB disk capacity, running Sun Solaris 7 and latest version of BIND.


2)      The DNS servers will be protected by Cisco® firewall technology.


D15.2.2.          Registry-Registrar Model and Protocol


            Registrars will access the Abacus Registry using NSI Registry Registrar Protocol (RRP), version 1.1.0; or Abacus Registry Registrar XML Protocol. The RRP protocol allows registrars to create, modify and delete domains and domain name servers in the Registry Database. The NSI RRP protocol is currently used by the ICANN- accredited registrars for .com, .net and .org domain names. The advantage of using this protocol will be that all current registrars will be able to configure their current systems to use the Abacus Registry with little or no effort. The RRP protocol is implemented as specified in RFC-2832. The RRP server will run on the server described above as “Registry-Registrar Server”. The Abacus RRP server is integrated with our billing and provisioning software RODOPI (developed by our RODOPI Software division). Registrar accounts will be created and maintained with the RODOPI software.





            Abacus America has developed a working prototype of the Central Registry Location with working Registry Database, RRP server, DNS server and Whois server, which can be accessed at:  http://rodopi.abac.net


            Abacus America is also currently working on a draft for XML based Registry-Registrar protocol, which will be more flexible and will provide support for multilingual domain names and IPv6 IP addresses.


D15.2.3           Database Capabilities


                        The Registry Database Server is designed to hold over 30 millions of domain records.  It can handle up to 5,000 simultaneous connections creating, modifying or deleting objects.  Through the Registry-Registrar Server, the Registry Database provides access for registrars to create, update and delete objects (domain names and name servers):


1)                  Object Creation:  When a domain name is successfully registered, the registrar receives expiration date and time based on the requested registration period.  Domain name objects can be associated with up to 13 Name Servers. Name server registrations are not limited to a specific period of time. Each Name Server is associated with one or more valid IP addresses. All Domain Name and Name Server objects are associated with the Registrar who created them. Name Servers are assigned unique identifiers (handles). Name Servers which are in a parent domain registered in the Registry Database can only be created by the registrar of the parent domain.


2)                  Object Editing:  Objects can be modified only by their registrars. Domain Name objects allow only modification of the name servers associated with them.  Name Server objects can be renamed and their IP addresses can be changed.


3)                  Object Deletion:  Objects can be deleted only by their registrars. Name Servers cannot be deleted if they are associated with valid Domain Names. When a Name Server is deleted, all associated IP addresses are deleted as well. When a Domain Name is deleted, all Name Servers using it as a parent domain are deleted as well, unless the Name Servers are associated with other Domain Names (in this case, the Domain Name is still included in the DNS zone files and the Registrar of the Name Server will be notified).


4)                  Object Transfers:  Ownership of Domain Name objects can be transferred between registrars.  Transfer of the Domain Name will also transfer Name Servers within the domain.  The transfer is initiated by a request from the registrar who wishes to become the new owner of the domain.  The current owner registrar can decline or approve the request.  If the transfer is not approved within a set period of time, the transfer request will be cancelled (default action).  The expiration period and the default action can be configured by the registrar.


5)                  Object Status:  Domain Names objects have status, which indicates whether they can be modified and/or included in the DNS zone files. The status can be changed only by the owner registrar.


6)                  Object Renewal and Expiration:  Domain Name objects can be renewed in annual increments.  The registrar receives a new expiration date, based on the requested renewal period. Only owner’s registrar can renew Domain Names.  Domain Names expire if they are not renewed within a set period, which can be configured for each registrar.


7)                  Object existence Query:  Each accredited Registrar can query the Registry Database for object existence.


8)                  Object Information Query: The owner’s registrar can query all objects’ details.


9)                  Grace Period: Domain Names creation and renewal can be cancelled within a grace period set for each registrar.



D15.2.4           Zone File Generation


            DNS zone files will be generated based on the Domain Name and Name Server objects in the Registry Database.  The zone file for each top-level domain includes NS resource records (RR) for each domain name – name server association and A resource records for each name server IP address association if the name server is in the top-level domain.  The zone files will be generated once a day.


D15.2.5.          Zone File Distribution and Publication


            The zone files are generated by the RODOPI Server, encrypted, signed and uploaded by FTP to all DNS servers.  A scheduled task on the DNS server will verify and decrypt the zone file, will check for syntax errors and upon success will reload the DNS server.  The encryption used will be 3DES.  All DNS servers will act as primary servers.  No zone transfers will be allowed.


            In the future, we will implement dynamic DNS updates (according to RFC-2136 and RFC-2137) to ensure real time modifications to the DNS servers.



D15.2.6           Billing and Collection Systems


            The Abacus registry will use the leading billing and provisioning software Rodopi.  Rodopi is a comprehensive billing, provisioning and customer care software suite for ISPs, IPPs, ASPs and Telcos.  It features on-line subscription, billing, bank reconciliation, customer support, e-mail to customers, on-line statement review, RADIUS interface, automated provisioning on a variety of Unix/NT/Win2K based servers, universal billing interface to accept usage information from a variety of UNIX/NT/Win2000 servers.  Rodopi will be fully integrated with the Registry Database and is web enabled.  Access to the billing system will be limited by IP addresses, protected by individual accounts and encrypted with SSL.


D15.2.7           Data Escrow and Backup


            The Abacus Registry will backup on a daily basis all transactions.  Once a week, full backup will be made of the Registry Database and the Whois Database.  The backups will be made on DDS tapes using state of the art ARCserve 2000 software. Multiple DDS drives will be used to concurrently transmit multiple data streams.  The daily and weekly backups will be automated as scheduled tasks.  The Registry will keep two (2) full weekly backups and the all daily transactions backups since the oldest full backup.

            Additional backup in text based or XML format will be sent to ICANN on a weekly basis.  This backup will contain the following information:


(a)                The name of the SLD being registered and the TLD for which registration is being requested;

(b)               The IP addresses of the primary nameserver and secondary nameserver(s) for the SLD;

(c)        The corresponding names of those nameservers;

(d)        The identity of Registrar (which may be provided through Registrar's website);

(e)        The original creation date of the registration;

(f)         The expiration date of the registration;

(g)        The name and postal address of the SLD holder;

(h)        The name, postal address, e-mail address, voice telephone number, and (where available) fax number of the technical contact for the SLD; and

(i)         The name, postal address, e-mail address, voice telephone number, and (where available) fax number of the administrative contact for the SLD.


D15.2.8           Publicly-Accessible Look Up / Whois Service


            Once a day, the changes in the Registry Database will be replicated to the Whois Database. The changes will be replicated using XML formatted transactions log, which will be encrypted and signed by the RODOPI server before uploading. The Whois server database will contain information identical to the Registry Database. The Whois server will be able to perform recursive lookups to obtain contacts information and other details.  The Whois server software to be utilized was developed by Abacus America.


D15.2.9.          System Security


            All locations will be protected by Cisco® firewall technology. The only traffic allowed to pass through the firewall will be:  DNS queries to the DNS server, ssh sessions; RRP requests, authorized access to the RODOPI Server web interface at the central location.  The firewall at the Whois location will allow only Whois queries.


            The DNS servers will run only BIND and ftp servers. The ftp service will be restricted by IP address, so only the RODOPI server can access it.  In addition, all files transferred will be encrypted and signed with 3DES technology.  The DNS servers will be only administrated through Secure Shell (SSH), limited by IP address.  No other service will be accepting or creating connections.


            All attempts to scan ports, hack, spoof IP addresses or break-in will be logged and investigated by our experienced security team.  Special attention will be paid to attempts to disrupt Registry operation.


D15.2.10         Peak Capacities


            According to the latest data from current root DNS servers in use, they handle on average 3000 queries per second.  Experimental benchmarking on a DNS server configured with 1,000,000 randomly generated domain names (with 3 NS records each) showed sufficient ability to handle same type of load.  200,000 queries for randomly generated domain names were sent from 2 machines and completed for 68 seconds, without showing any significant load on the DNS server.


            The Registry Database Server can handle up to 5,000 simultaneous connections creating, modifying or deleting objects, a number which exceeds the peak capabilities of the RRP server.  During the design of the RRP system, issues with current .com/.net/.org registrars were taken in consideration.  As such, Abacus America decided to use hardware SSL implementation - Intel® NetStructure accelerator to eliminate delays caused by the overhead from creating SSL sessions.


D15.2.11         System Reliability


            The system reliability depends on factors such as hardware availability, network availability and power supply.  The Abacus Registry will use reliable hardware by industry leaders Compaq, Cisco and Intel.


            Compaq guarantees 99.99% uptime for its UNIX servers and 99.9% uptime for its Windows 2000 Advanced and Datacenter servers.  The RAID5 arrays of hot-swappable disks ensure very high reliability as failed hard drives can be replaced without interrupting system operation and without data loss.


            By providing hot swappable standby servers to all major servers and providing 5 sites for DNS servers, Abacus Registry will reduce the probability of server failure to 0.001 x 0.001 = 0.000001  resulting in 99.9999% reliability of the house holding (not critical) functions. Since five sets of DNS servers will be implemented, the probability for total system failure will be: 0.000001 power 5, resulting in reliability of 99.99999999999999999999999999999%  ( thirty “9”).


            To ensure highest network availability, the Registry will be using multi-homed backbone connection and BGP routing.


D15.2.12         System Outage Prevention


            The DNS servers are the most important part of the Registry operation. The minimum of four (4) DNS servers hosted at different geographic locations ensures that DNS service will be available even if two thirds of the servers are taken out of operation.  Power back up and generators will be available at every location to ensure at least 48 hours of operation in the event of power grid failure.  The power grid at the main location is more reliable than the MTBF of a UPS (5 to 10 years). To ensure quick restoration of the systems to operation identical hardware with preinstalled software will be available at all locations.  All locations will be locally and remotely monitored.  There will be a mechanism for secure remote administrative access and maintenance.  Electronic locks and security guards will restrict the physical access to all facilities. Intrusion detection systems will be available.  Registrars will be notified in advance about any planned maintenance downtime of the RRP system.


D15.2.13         System Recovery Procedures


            The Abacus Registry has experienced technical personnel who can restore the systems to operation in the event of system outage.  Identical hardware with preinstalled software will be available at all locations and, in the event of hardware malfunction, components will be replaced.  All systems are designed for easy replacement of components, e.g. with hot-swappable hard drives and power supplies.  In the event of hard drive failure on the Registry Database Server or the Whois Database Server, the hard drive can be replaced without interrupting database operation.  In the event of unexpected malfunction of the whole RAID array, all drives will be replaced and the database will be restored from the tape backup.  It will take about 3 hours to restore database with 50 GB capacity using 4 DDS drives.  While the Registry Database is down, DNS and Whois services will be still operational.  In the event of DNS server failure, the current zone file will be uploaded from the RODOPI server after hardware is replaced. All failures and outages will be logged and analyzed to prevent future problems of the same type.


D.15.2.14        Technical and Other Support


            Abacus America will provide technical support to the TLD Registars with whom it is working.   For each and every problem reported, a ticket will be created and such ticket will not be closed until the problem is resolved.  (Abacus America has been operating in this manner for many years with its ISP, Internet and software services provided through it’s A+Net and Rodopi divisions.) Furthermore, problem resolutions will be recorded in a “knowledge” database, for use by other technicians.


                        Abacus America will provide emergency 24/7 technical support for emergency and non-emergency support.  The technical help system utilized by Abacus America is also completely web enabled, allowing both the support personnel and the customers to work simultaneously on the project over a web interface.


                        In addition, Abacus America utilizes advanced Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system for technical support.  The IVR system will step-in in peak load and will automatically create tickets in the support system.  At the same time it will notify the customer about the ticket number and the support personnel about the problem.  Currently services are available only in English.  However, work is already in progress to map out the work involved in supporting other languages, depending on the demand from registrars.


                        Abacus America does not anticipate it will provide technical support to the general public since it will be working exclusively through registrars.  However, Abacus America will support the general public and the Internet society through the information published at its web page, as well as through its press releases and public relation activities. Abacus America is committed to keeping the public informed about the latest development in its TLD policies and practices.


D15.3 Subcontractors.


            Abacus America does not anticipate using subcontractors for outsourcing the Registry operation in part or in whole in the sense provided by ICANN.