On December 14th, 2017 I noticed that Croatian Academic and Research Network (and their DNS department at DNS.hr) is showing a unique record. There are now over 100,000 domains on .HR Croatian ccTLD. This includes the domains com.hr, from.hr, and the main .hr. I was watching this number carefully, and earlier this morning I saw the 99,991 registered domains and I knew it will tip over sometime today.
We can see from the graph below that the Croatian ccTLD was struggling from 2011 to 2012 (just the same as the entire Croatian economy), but it finally picked up some steam. Actually, that was the year when I first met with one of “.HR representatives”, on the ICAAN conference in Prague. Back from 2006-2011 when I was running a small web hosting business if you wanted to register a .HR domain name, you literally had to file papers with them. When they gave you the stamp of their approval, you could proceed with setting up the website. It took a week to do all that with the post office playing a major role.
Can you buy a .HR (Croatian ccTLD) domain name?
I am happy that this has changed now. Just today I have registered a .HR domain name for a friend of mine, it took only a few minutes. The nice thing though is that Croatian companies have a right to own one .HR domain name free of charge. That’s right, it’s absolutely free, you just have to renew it once per year. And the company has to remain active. After a long debate, a couple of years ago, Carnet made a radical decision. Croatians (yes, only Croatians) can now buy .HR domain names. Before, only companies could register them for free. If you wanted to purchase a name, you could only do so on a .com.hr extension. Nowadays Croatian web hosting companies charge at around $100 / year.
Can I sell a .HR domain name?
There’s another big change since I was into .HR domain names more than a few years ago. Before you weren’t allowed to sell a .HR domain name. This was very difficult (impossible) if you wanted to do domain investing or if you wanted to sell your website. But now, with a new ruling, this has changed. Now it is allowed to resell your domain name and website on this domain name. However, the owner still has to be Croatian, or Croatian business. Who knows, maybe this changes as well in the future, and we may see some Human Relations companies, services or departments take on the relatively obscure Croatian ccTLD. Also, now that the 100k mark was crossed, maybe it’s not so obscure after all.