Several years ago a client created this unique product and the initial reception he got from potential customers was “we’ve been waiting for something like this for yonks!”. The product was a success, it met a demand.
Being the creative lad he is, he came up with a catchy brand name too and like the product, the brand name was well received by customers.
A couple of years down the track, his success continued to grow but he came up with a problem. At first he shrugged it off, but he soon realized that if the problem continued and he did nothing about it, he would soon lose business, if he wasn’t already losing them.
A competitor had “piggy backed” on his success by creating a competing product but with a name that was almost identical to his brand name. In fact, the packaging too was so similar without doubt some customers would have been misled into thinking what they were purchasing was that of my friend’s but in fact wasn’t.
My friend’s initial thought was that the competitor was no match and even though the brand name looked somewhat similar he thought the competitor’s product was no match. How wrong he was.
During the assessment of his case, it was identified that he had no registered trade marks and while he may have had an equitable interest the fact was he had no registered ownership of his brand under the country’s trade mark law.
So if you were to ask why you should register a trade mark, the simple answer is – it is an asset of your business. Why would you want someone to take advantage of your investment, of your success without your consent?
Taking a proactive approach in registering your trade mark cements your ownership of an intellectual property. The registration provides you legal grounds to prevent others from using the trade mark without your consent even before they enter the market.
Registering a trade mark also helps you be more proactive in the protection of your intellectual property.
But registering your trade mark against potential infringement isn’t the only reason. Commercializing your intellectual property either through licensing, assignment or franchising are just some ways in how you can monetize your IP.
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