Africa & Middle East

“The change starts with you” – INTA embraces diversity message in 2021 Annual Meeting opening ceremony

The 2021 INTA Annual Meeting kicked off with an inspiring message to delegates on the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion and becoming a brand steward.

“The change starts with you” – INTA embraces diversity message in 2021 Annual Meeting opening ceremony
New IP office standards body set to launch in effort to combat stark digital disparities
12 Nov 2021

New IP office standards body set to launch in effort to combat stark digital disparities

The International Intellectual Property Standards Group will launch in the coming months with the aim of advocating for improved standardisation at IP offices, WTR can reveal.

Amazon and Weber lawsuit team-up; Tiffany and Supreme collaboration; anti-counterfeiting supporting sustainability – news digest
12 Nov 2021

Amazon and Weber lawsuit team-up; Tiffany and Supreme collaboration; anti-counterfeiting supporting sustainability – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at the South African IP office warning of email issues, a major new e-commerce platform launching in Kenya, and much more.

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25 Nov 2021

The sugarloaf pineapple: GIs as a development tool in action

Benin, Africa, has registered its first protected geographical indication, the result of much planning and collaboration by the national government, the European Union and the French Development Agency. It is hoped that the move will boost economic growth and preserve agricultural heritage. Read more

18 Nov 2021

How the military coup in Sudan affects trademark rights

Government services related to intellectual property appear unaffected by last month’s military action by the Sudanese military but it remains to be seen how long this remains the case. Read more

10 Nov 2021

“Enormous momentum” – global spread of plain packaging revealed in new report

A new report delves into health warnings and plain packaging on tobacco products, revealing a significant uptick in brand restrictions over the past couple of years. Read more

4 Nov 2021

Petition to ICC requests counterfeiting involving widespread death be classed as crime against humanity

The Anti-counterfeit Network Africa has formally submitted a petition to the International Criminal Court proposing that deadly counterfeiting be listed as a crime against humanity. Read more

Anti-Counterfeiting

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23 Oct 2021

A danger to millions: why counterfeiting should be included among crimes against humanity

With a petition set for the International Criminal Court, it is about time the dangers of counterfeit goods are considered among the list of crimes against humanity, argues our Saturday opinion. Read more

7 Oct 2021

Nigeria’s counterfeiting epidemic: expert outlines what brands can do to fight back

The co-author of a new study into Nigerian counterfeits reveals what international brand owners and IP associations can do to improve the situation. Read more

20 Sep 2021

New precedential judgment: offering product for sale through ‘hidden link’ is presumed unlawful

In a dispute involving Facebook, adidas and an individual who managed a Facebook group promoting branded products, the Tel-Aviv District Court has held that the offering for sale of products through a ‘hidden link’ scheme was unlawful. Read more

1 Sep 2021

Online marketplaces in South Africa that should be on counterfeit enforcement radars

In the latest instalment in our regular series on digital marketplaces that brand owners should monitor as part of their global anti-counterfeiting efforts, we head to South Africa. Read more

Brand management

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29 Oct 2021

Who are the world's in-house trademark stars? Not long left to nominate for WTR Industry Awards

There's only a short time left to ensure that the critical work undertaken by corporate trademark professionals is recognised in the 2022 WTR Industry Awards and the next edition of WTR 300.  Read more

31 Aug 2021

Mariah Carey trademark dispute; Mars Wrigley signs deal with Brand Central; Nigeria counterfeits update – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at China seeking comments on a new judgement standard, the Ayla trademark dispute being revived by the Ninth Circuit, the Costa Rica IP office aligning with CP6, and more. Read more

20 Aug 2021

CIPO examination backlog worsens; INTA files amicus brief; UKIPO changes fee process – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at interim deputy director Coke Stewart departing the USPTO, Namibia joining TMclass, Beyond Meat looking to introduce non-dairy brands, and much more. Read more

6 Aug 2021

PepsiCo sells Tropicana brand; Oatly loses infringement suit; Banjul Protocol effective in The Gambia – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at OpSec Security launching an analytics tool to neutralise bad actor networks, a Scottish knitwear company winning an EUIPO appeal, and much more. Read more

Enforcement and Litigation

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29 Jul 2021

The Banjul Protocol, Schweppes and a first-of-its-kind decision in Uganda: Legal Updates from Africa and the Middle East you may have missed

WTR’s Legal Updates are written by a select panel of over 160 leading experts who analyse the latest trademark-related developments and decisions in more than 60 jurisdictions. Read more

20 Jul 2021

High Court issues landmark decision on industrial design infringement

This is first time that the High Court of Uganda has considered the issue of the infringement of industrial design rights. Read more

13 Jul 2021

Godrej case: re-examining the jurisdiction of the Commercial Court

Twenty-one years after the Kibo Match decision, in which the Commercial Court’s jurisdiction to entertain trademark disputes was questioned for the first time, the Commercial Court has re-affirmed its competence in Godrej v Target. Read more

2 Jul 2021

Coca-Cola wins TTAB claim; adidas and Thom Browne clash; EUIPO breaks trademark application record – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at the USPTO eliminating the handwritten signature requirement, the Finnish IP office revamping its trademark web pages, and much more. Read more

Government/Policy

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1 Sep 2021

AfrIPI officially launches but firms urged to raise awareness of ongoing activities

The Africa Intellectual Property Rights and Innovation Project officially launched during the Africa Regional IP Organisation Diplomatic Conference in late August. Read more

30 Jul 2021

Priority claims and IP rights in Nigeria: urgent call for action

The Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property has not yet been fully implemented in Nigeria, which has triggered recent calls for action by stakeholders. Read more

8 Jun 2021

Push for the protection and promotion of GIs in Nigeria

Nigeria still relies on crude oil as its main export and economic driver. However, it is believed that, with a strategic IP legislation on GIs, non-oil exports could be better harnessed to achieve economic diversification. Read more

17 May 2021

The Gambia accedes to the Banjul Protocol – key points and concerns

Just under a year since the accession of Mozambique, The Gambia has also acceded to the Banjul Protocol, bringing the total membership up to 12 countries. However, it is currently doubtful whether ARIPO registrations would be enforceable in the country. Read more

Law Firms

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2 Jun 2021

Emerging threats and trends in online brand protection; share your insights

WTR is asking readers to share their experience of the online brand protection environment in the past 12 months, in an effort to identify how practice is evolving in response to emerging threats. Read more

14 May 2021

Qatar Airways decries VisitQatar.com; Donuts launches anti-phishing tool; INTA to hold free legal clinic – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at brands risking a boycott for poor ad placement, new plans for the Victoria’s Secret brand, and much more. Read more

7 May 2021

The Gambia joins Banjul Protocol; UGG dispute latest; Venezuelan IPO reduces fees – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at Nextbite adding more celebrity virtual brands to its portfolio, Native American tribes including tribal insignias in the USPTO's database for free, and much more. Read more

23 Apr 2021

Chile to allow non-traditional trademarks; Spanish government pledges IP commitment; GRILLOUMI dispute – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at Chinese officials obtaining registered trademarks for the entire South China Sea, Dubai Customs recycling 134,000 counterfeit items, and much more. Read more

IP Offices

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18 Oct 2021

Introduction of utility model patents - advantages and concerns

Recently, the Nigerian Patent Registry unexpectedly directed applicants whose patent applications failed short of the relevant requirements to file the applications as utility models patents. The move has caused concern as it is not backed by any legal provisions or framework. Read more

13 Oct 2021

The UAE joins the Madrid Protocol - what it means for UAE and international rights holders

The UAE will become a member of the Madrid Protocol from 28 December 2021. This is a momentous development for UAE-based rights holders, as well as international rights holders looking for trademark protection in the UAE. Read more

30 Apr 2021

Walmart takes on Kanye West; EUIPO extends presence in Africa; Crayola teams up with Build-A-Bear – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at the USPTO seeking innovation medal nominations, the McCarthy Institute heading to Arizona, delivery apps changing the branding game, and much more. Read more

20 Apr 2021

European Super League may cost clubs €2.5 billion brand value; Cuthbert the Caterpillar returns; Barbie and Zara partner – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at academics and a university duking it out over trademark bullying accusations, Lids partnering with Designer Brands, and much more. Read more

Online

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26 Jan 2021

New ARIPO director ‘vision for future’; AAFA counterfeit liability call; Boohoo buys Debenhams – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at Nike taking a kick at counterfeit footwear manufacturers, USPTO reopening a comment period on state sovereign immunity, ICANN inviting leadership applications, and much more. Read more

30 Nov 2020

Ranked: the IP offices with the most accessible web platforms

New data from WTR identifies the national IP offices with websites that are most accessible for users, including those with vision or motor impairment. Read more

19 Nov 2020

Inclusion in the IP profession; removing formalities requirements; UKIPO on Brexit – INTA 2020 update

As the INTA 2020 Annual Meeting draws to a close, WTR presents observations from the numerous sessions that have taken place over the past few days. Read more

18 Nov 2020

The verdict on virtual exhibits at the 2020 INTA Annual Meeting

With the 2020 INTA Annual Meeting in full swing, WTR speaks with exhibitors at the virtual event to see how their experience compares with previous years and what changes they would like to see at future digital conferences. Read more

Portfolio Management

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27 Jul 2021

Reducing refusals in Egypt: practical strategies for rights holders

A number of brand owners have run into problems when filing applications through a subsidiary or associated company in Egypt. Read more

14 Jun 2021

Court upholds Nivea Men passing-off claim

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of Beiersdorf, finding that a shower gel product, Connie Men, passed off the long-established brand Nivea Men. The case is unusual in that one judge issued a robust dissenting judgment. Read more

10 Jun 2021

Amended trademark regulations come into force: key points highlighted

Uganda's Trademarks (Amendment) Regulations No 9/2021, which came into effect on 14 May 2021, has brought about some welcome changes to the provisions of the Trademark Regulations 2012. Read more

8 Apr 2021

New company law and recognition of well-known marks - what you need to know

Although Nigeria’s trademark law does not protect unregistered well-known trademarks against similar or identical company names, the owners of such marks may be able to rely on Section 852(1)(d) of the new Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020. Read more

Trademark law

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11 May 2021

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: Israel

It is possible, although not mandatory, for rights holders to file a complaint while recording their registered trademarks with Customs. Read more

3 May 2021

Legislative changes and key decisions from the Middle East and Africa region analysed

Each quarter we will be running a series of pieces presenting recent Legal Updates that you may have missed. For our next instalment we turn our attention to the Middle East and Africa. Read more

29 Mar 2021

Covid-19’s impact and amended Trademark Regulations - what you need to know

This update provides a brief overview of the effects of the covid-19 pandemic in Uganda and gives a peek into the recently amended Trademark (Amendment) Regulations 2021. Read more

25 Nov 2020

The two laws set to shake up the Kenyan IP system in 2021

The latest legislative reforms in a series of ongoing improvements to the national IP regime offer welcome news for rights holders in Kenya. Read more