The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and EURid this week announced they are set to intensify their collaboration with a number of initiatives, with the main one being to allow start-ups, in particular, to obtain their trademark and .eu domain name as part of one process.
The collaboration will support users of the European Union’s intellectual property system, particularly start-ups, by helping them to obtain trademark and domain name protection as part of one process allowing them to protect their brands online from the very beginning of their business journey.
At present, EU trademark applicants are advised whether their trademark is available as a .eu domain name at the end of the online application process at EUIPO. Applicants and holders can also set up alerts to be informed once a .eu domain name that matches their trademark is registered.
Additionally, under a new work programme agreed jointly by the two organisations, EUIPO and EURid will explore the possibility of implementing a reciprocal process when a .eu domain name is registered, allowing holders to see if a trademark with a similar name is available at the EUIPO.
Both organisations are also planning to work on a common study on application behaviour, to see whether trademarks or domain names are registered first. The study will assist in tackling fraudulent domain names and bad faith domain name registrations. Work will also begin on a feasibility study to create a tool to inform users of the availability of the terms they are searching for both as a trademark and as a domain name.
With outreach to SMEs at the heart of the EUIPO’s Strategic Plan 2025, information from EURid on domain names will be integrated into a planned chatbot for SMEs, as well as into discovery guides and webinars, to further guide smaller companies towards an integrated brand protection scheme.