BESP-OAK CONFIRMS THEIR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY POLICY TO THE INDUSTRY

Vancouver PremiumWhen they discovered that one of their competitors, Four Seasons, appeared to be trading off the goodwill in their hugely successful Vancouver Premium collection, Mosley Trading Company Limited, instructed ACID Accredited lawyer Niall Head-Rapson of McDaniel & Co to write a letter before claim. This has resulted in an undertaking from Four Seasons that they will no longer use the name ‘Vancouver’ without permission and they have paid a contribution towards Mosley’s legal costs.  Mosley Trading Company Limited, which trades as Besp-Oak Furniture, has secured trade mark registrations for the use of ‘Vancouver’ and ‘Vancouver Premium’ as brand names for this key collection.

Besp-Oak MD, Steve Mosley said, “We invest heavily in designing and developing our furniture ranges and are determined to send a clear message to all our competitors. We have a sound intellectual property strategy and we will assert this at every opportunity. We are market leaders of oak furniture in the UK wholesale market and for many years we have had to endure people imitating our stock and trading off the back of our goodwill. This has to stop. The Vancouver range of furniture has proved extremely popular with sales over the past four years in excess of a value of £20m. Any actions by third parties which erode this market share will be taken seriously.”

Dids Macdonald, ACID’s CEO said, “As a result of intellectual property reviews for our corporate members, we have been able to advise many companies in this sector of the necessity to be proactive in the protection of their intellectual property, including trade mark registrations. In the 21st century, any company hoping to survive the downturn needs to keep a keen eye on the bottom line – the safeguarding of their intellectual property, their know-how.”

The furniture industry is one of the most copied sectors within the creative industries. One of the most effective ways that design-led companies can protect their new designs is to register any new designs with OHIM (Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market). European design registration ensures monopoly in a new design for 25 years in 27 member states. Being in possession of a registered design makes it much easier and more cost effective to take action against alleged infringers because there is a numbered certificate which confirms “ownership” of the design. The basic criteria to register a new design are that no identical design has been made available to the public and that it has individual character. This means that the appearance, or overall impression, is different from the appearance of other already known designs. Clearly it cannot be a copy of someone else’s design. Trade mark registration is very important too, after all, if you build up a significant reputation under the name by which you trade or you have brought out a successful product range associated with a name, it doesn’t make sense not to protect it against those who may trade on your goodwill.

Besp-Oak Furniture is the brand of choice for over 250 garden centres nationwide.  Over 30 indoor and outdoor furniture collections are available, ensuring that there is a style or range to suit everyone.  Besp-Oak are proud to be market leaders within their domain, continually spearheading the development of new designs which are certain to surpass any preconceived expectations of what oak furniture has to offer a home. www.besp-oakfurniture.co.uk

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