Use it or lose it…IKEA

Well known furniture store IKEA have had two of their trade mark registrations cancelled by the Supreme Court in Indonesia for goods covering, amongst others, furniture in Classes 20 and 21. The cancellation was filed by a small company in Indonesia using the mark IKEA INTAN KHATULISTWA ESA ABADI which it registered in late 2013 for goods in identical classes. As a result of the ruling, IKEA have lost these trade marks and the Indonesian furniture maker, PT Ratania Khatulistiwa has been granted the rights to use this mark in connection with their furniture.

Trade marks can be vulnerable to cancellation if they are not used in accordance with the goods and services for which they were registered. The periods of non-use taken into legal consideration differ for each jurisdiction. In the UK, for instance, a trade mark becomes vulnerable to cancellation based on non-use 5 years after registration. In Indonesia, this period is 3 years.

The cancelled marks in question were registered in 2005 and 2010, yet were not put to use. Some years later, IKEA had most likely reviewed their situation and noticed that the registrations were vulnerable to non-use as the company filed new applications in 2012, and opened a store in 2014 following successful registration.

Going forward, it may be that IKEA appeal this ruling, as well as use their later registrations to potentially take action against PT Ratania Khatulistiwa. Either way, there will undoubtedly be further developments on this.

The lesson here? You should regularly review your registrations and put them to use to avoid risk of later losing them through cancellation. It is your Intellectual Property, after all.

If you would like to check the status of your trade mark registrations or talk to somebody about anything raised in this article then please do not hesitate to call one of our Trade Mark Attorneys at Dolleymores.

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