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Hi hurra32,

It’s good you’re thinking about these branding issues, especially if you feel your current trade mark no longer reflects your company’s purpose. Here are a few of my thoughts.

hurra32, post: 218006, member: 69412 wrote:
This domain name describes the software perfectly and is perfect for branding.

Names that perfectly describe the product in question are unlikely to be registrable as trade marks. For instance, “wholegrain” would be very difficult to register for bread products, as it describes a characteristic of those products. So, you say the name perfectly describes the software and (thus?) is perfect for branding. You may have meant something different by “describes”, but if it’s the above, you may need to rethink how well-suited it actually is as a trade mark.

hurra32, post: 218006, member: 69412 wrote:
I had considered renaming the company with the same product name, as I want to avoid brand confusion. However if I do this, the company name is no longer appropriate for other products it may develop in the future.

Has anyone any comments or suggestions?

Without knowing your exact situation, the trade marks and the relevant products, I can’t make a precise recommendation. I agree that naming the company the same as the product can be limiting. If you have a name in mind that refreshes the company’s image, aligns with its purpose and will be useful for many products in future, that’s probably a better bet. Like ‘Microsoft’ being an overarching brand, rather than the company also being called ‘Windows’ after its flagship product.

hurra32, post: 218006, member: 69412 wrote:
With regards to trademarks, I recall there being an issue when Burger King came to Australia and found that “Burger King” was already used by a local business (although probably not trademarked). What power (if any) would a newly acquired trademark owner have against a prior company using said name?

Basically, I would like to trademark my product name, but the cost involved may be a problem. If someone else snatched the trademark before me, I would like to know what could happen. I am confident the trademark does not currently exist.

If I correctly understand what you’re asking, if someone got in before you with the trade mark, and you’d never used the name before (or for a very short period) you’d likely have a hard time trying to register it in the face of the prior trade mark.

Again, though, if the trade mark truly is descriptive of the goods you’re after, then anyone may have a tough time registering it (without adding other distinctive elements to the trade mark before applying).

I hope this helps. Feel free ask further questions, if you’d like. Best of luck with it all.