Tucows and strategy

Since 1993, Tucows has provided simple, useful services that help people unlock the power of the Internet. In the early days, Internet Service Providers and other partner sites around the world ‘mirrored’ our software library to provide fast, local downloads to their end users. We diversified over the years by leveraging our distribution channels and core competencies to expand to wholesale and retail domain name registration, mobile phone service, and symmetrical gigabit Internet service. Today, Tucows employs over 700 people and provides Internet-related services to millions of customers around the world.

In 1999, we invented wholesale domain name registration; today, we are the second largest domain name registrar in the world. OpenSRS and Enom have set the standard for wholesale domain name services, selling domain names, email addresses and digital security products through a global reseller network of over 37,000 Web companies, for more than 24 million end users.

Hover makes it easy for individuals and small businesses to manage their domain names and email addresses. Our easy-to-use management tools and extraordinary customer support earned us top mention in Lifehacker’s Five Best Domain Name Registrars and, more importantly, regularly delight over 300,000 customers.

Ting Mobile disrupted the US cellphone industry in 2012, offering smart, honest and friendly phone service to people conditioned to expect the opposite. Today, we have nearly 300,000 active subscribers. Ting Mobile has consistently been ranked one of the highest-rated wireless providers by Consumer Reports Magazine, beating Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile.

In 2015, we began offering Fiber-to-the-Premise (FTTP) services through Ting Internet, redefining what people expect from their Internet service provider. This division allows us to offer “crazy fast” fiber Internet to markets where middling speeds delivered over aging copper and cable are often the only option. Since our launch, we have introduced gigabit Internet to ten U.S. cities and towns, and we are in the process of expanding to additional areas.

See Tucows timeline

Why invest?

From our role as a storied global shareware pioneer in the Internet space, Tucows has quietly built itself into a successful company on the simple premise of providing world-class experiences to our customers.

Today, Tucows has three distinct businesses that leverage our central technical, administrative and support competencies, and follow our uncompromising customer-centric orientation that has driven the growth of the company, and garnered us exceptional net promoter scores and recognition from Consumer Reports.

Together, our portfolio of businesses represents a robust and long-term model for financial growth. Our two mature business units, domains and mobile phone service, are astutely managed and create predictable, recurring revenues that provide the capital investment for our Internet access business, an opportunity that leverages our centralized competencies and the beloved Ting brand, and sets up a runway for long-term growth in recurring revenues and with attractive margins.

For all businesses in the Tucows enterprise, we will always continue to look at the best avenues for capital allocation, and that may include re-investing in individual businesses and seeking acquisitions that represent deep value and bring synergies to our domains and mobile phone business, or expand our footprint for Internet access. We will also continue looking for new business opportunities to build from the ground up that leverage our core strengths and deliver superior value to users.

Investment summary

  • Consistent and reliable earnings through high volume, low-cost subscription services

  • Dominant position in the global wholesale domain name market

  • Potential for continued growth opportunity in mobile

  • Opportunity for next phase of outsized long-term growth as an early mover in the fiber-to-the-premise industry

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