The past two months have been an extraordinary time for the InterCosmos Group, which operates a network of Internet companies in New Orleans. The company's colocation and hosting unit, Zipa, gained 990,000 hostnames between Aug. 15 and Sept. 15, capping a year of strong hostname growth. The huge gain appears to have come almost entirely from the registration of new domains that are now parked at Zipa, which added just 15,000 active sites on the month.
The company gained widespread notice during Hurricane Katrina, when its staff labored to keep its operations online as the city was battered and flooded. InterCosmos' domain registrar business, DirectNIC, is housed on the 10th and 11th floors of a 27-floor office tower near Lafayette Square, a portion of New Orleans that escaped the worst of the flooding. Employees live-blogged their efforts and posted photos of the storm's impact on the DirectNIC facility. An on-site webcam broadcast video of looting on surrounding streets.
DirectNIC is the world's 11th-largest registrar, with more than 1.1 million domains registered. In 2003 Intercosmos paid just $250,000 to acquire a finished Enron Corp. data center in a bankruptcy sale. The 6,600 square foot New Orleans facility now hosues the shared hosting and colocation operations of Zipa.com.