A technology company from Astana, which developed a mobile app, received a claim from a potential competitor from Russia. It turned out that our client’s advertising began to appear in Russia, the mobile applications are similar. But the main point is that the trademarks of the two developing companies were very similar. And advertising your own products under a brand that is confusingly similar to someone else’s brand is practically using someone else’s trademark, i.e. it is against the law.
We met with the Russians at the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) and discussed ways to resolve the situation peacefully. The Russian company would have been happy for our client to give up the Russian market in principle, but nobody cancelled freedom of competition. Then they demanded that our client not use his trademark (it was very similar to the Russian one).
We agreed that we would replace the trademark. This was also in the interests of our client, because his software product was of high quality, and he was not interested in the consumers confusing the application of a Kazakh company with that of his competitors.
The result. Our client’s new trademark is already under registration; it is very different from the Russian brand. The Russians have withdrawn their claims, the EEC has stopped all the proceedings, and the client is not at risk of being held liable (civil, administrative, or criminal).
And most importantly, our client will have no problem entering the Russian market under his own brand and with a Kazakhstani mobile app, when he is ready for this. This case was handled by our firm’s deputy head, Dinara Ospanova.