A trademark is a distinctive word or combination of words or numerals or both or a symbol or signature or shape of goods or packaging style or combination of colours or logo or device or label or even non-traditional elements (like sound, smell or taste), that identifies the particular goods produced or services offered by an individual or a company. It helps the consumers to recognise the source of a certain product or service based on the trademark used by the producer or service provider.
With long conspicuous use and maintaining the quality of goods or services, a trademark can become a synonym for the business, e.g. MAGGI for instant noodles or BISLERI for bottled water.
A trade mark is the most valuable and potent marketing tool for a business. It benefits in positioning and differentiating the products or services in the market. It even supports to develop the business identity.
Thus, it is advised for the business owners to register their trademark for protection of their brand name as it provides them an exclusive right to use the registered mark to identify their goods or services, and ensure that no one else can use their trademark without their permission.
Since trademark is a territorial right, it is a requirement to register the trademark before the Trademark Office of the country. If the application is not granted in a particular country, then even formidable business houses can suffer. In the matter of Apple v. Xintong Tiandi Technology in China, a dispute over the mark - “IPHONE”, Xintong Tiandi won, uses the brand for its leather goods.
Hence, applying for TM registration should not be delayed.