Intell Windows make an Intelligent choice?


News that the UK government is intending to boost protection against groundless threats comes too late for one small UK firm, which has changed its name from Intell Windows to Intelligent Windows following a “heavy-handed” letter from US-based manufacturers Intel.

Despite being in separate businesses – Intel make semiconductors, while Intelligent Windows is part of the Intelligent Home Improvement Group, which provides windows, doors and conservatories for homes – the smaller firm has re-branded rather than challenge Intel’s position that their use of “Intell Windows” adversely affects Intel’s trade mark rights.

Under European trade mark law, proprietors of trade marks with a reputation benefit from an enhanced level of protection and are able to prevent the use of similar marks, even if those marks are used on dissimilar goods or services.

This case illustrates the importance of performing searches to ensure names and signs are available before using them in the course of trade, because registered trade mark searches are usually significantly less expensive than rebranding.

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