Nike’s Win, Oyo to Expand to UK, Oxford University in Trademark Dilemma, and other news

Indian Trademark Statistics for December (Third Week) 2018, Hakuna Matata is Disney’s?, Playboy for Your Feet, Oyo Rooms to Expand to UK, Bihar’s Silao Khaja Obtains GI Registration and more, brought to you by the Trademark Attorneys at BananaIP (BIP) Counsels.


“The future of branding is marketing with people, not at them” – John Morgan


The Indian Trademark Office has had a slow week. The total number of the show cause hearings issued has increased by forty seven percent (47%). Similarly, the total number of applications published in the trademark journal has increased by eight percent (8%). However, the total applications disposed through show cause hearings has decreased by sixteen percent (16%).

Weekly Indian Trademark Statistics

Particulars Last Week This Week Change in %
Total Trademark Applications Examined by Trademark Office 9551 9570 An increase of 0.2%
Total Applications Disposed through Show Cause Hearings 6607 5546 A decrease of 16%
Total Applications Published in the Trademark Journal 8969 9670 An increase of 8%
Total Registrations Granted 7057 7067 An increase of 0.14%
Total Hearing Notices Issued 9375 13758 An increase of 47%
Total Renewals Notices Issued 1902 1562 A decrease of 18%

 Trademark Statistics by Office

Total Number of New Applications Received from December 12th to December 19th, 2018

Sr. No Jurisdiction New Applications Examined Published Registered
1 AHMEDABAD 912 550 917 545
2 CHENNAI 1477 839 2135 1538
3 DELHI 2794 1614 2186 2528
4 KOLKATA 421 292 510 300
5 MUMBAI 1738 1044 2053 1709
Total   7342 4339 7801 6620

Yearly Trademark Statistics

Trademark Statistics from January 01st, 2018 to December 19th 2018

  • Total Number of Trademark Applications Filed – 292867
  • Total Number of Trademark Applications Examined –  140049
  • Total Number of Trademark Applications Published –143371
  • Total Number of Trademark Applications Registered 313472


I Pity the Fool

No, we are not trying to belittle our readers here. The catchphrase ‘I Pity the fool’ was applied as a trademark by Laurence Tureaud, commonly known as Mr. T who is an American actor and retired professional wrestler. Mr. T became well known in the 80’s for use of this catch phrase in his show “The A Team”.  The mark was granted registration in 2015 for products such as key chains, drinking mugs and apparel.


Nike’s Win Against Counterfeiters

Nike Inc., the celebrated sports shoes brand filed for trademark infringement to restrain a company named Rubal from selling counterfeit products under the brand name NIKE and associated trademarks.  It has been claimed such usage is in violation of Nike’s statutory and common law rights. Since its adoption in 1971, Nike has been using the brand name consecutively worldwide and is the registered trademark holder of marks such as NIKE, SWOOSH, FLYKNIT, NIKE AIR, etc.  Rubal is a manufacturer engaged in similar lines of business as Nike, and has been using the marks NIKE, SWOOSH device, FLYKNIT, NIKE AIR for selling counterfeit products.


Hakuna Matata is Disney’s? Maybe Not

Disney, the popular media house has found itself in the midst of a controversy for the use of the phrase ‘Hakuna Matata’. The phrase was used in the classic Disney movie ‘The Lion King’ which was released in 1994.  A petition has been started by Zimbabwean activist Shelton Mpala against the use of the term, claiming that the term is a part of the Swahili language and culture, and the use of the term by Disney is equal to robbery. The term is used in a number of East African countries such as Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda amongst others. Disney had applied for the trademark of the term, to be used on T-shirts, in 1994 and was granted registration in 2003. Hakuna Matata translate to ‘no worries’ or ‘no problem’ in Swahili. The matter has come to light after the launch of the trailer for ‘The Lion King’, a remake of the 1994 movie.

Oxford University Receives Opposition

It looks like it will not be an easy game for the Oxford University to trademark the name ‘Oxford’. The Oxford University Press (OUP), a division of the university, had filed for the mark ‘Oxford’ in October with the UK IPO under a number of classes. However, the application has received a number of oppositions with the contention that ‘Oxford’ being a city, the University cannot monopolise the name for its own benefit. It is interesting to note that Oxford University has been granted a trademark for the term ‘Oxford’ in the European Union.  The present application has been made in anticipation of Brexit.


Playboy for Your Feet

Buscemi, the American luxury footwear and accessories brand has partnered with Playboy Enterprises, a Chicago based global media and lifestyle company for launching a footwear collection in celebration of Playboy’s 65th Anniversary. The footwear collection includes 40MM and 100MM Playboy shoe available in white, black and pink which prominently displays the iconic Playboy bunny on the side.

Oyo to Expand to UK

Oyo Rooms, one of the fastest growing hotel chains in India plans to expand in the UK with a franchising and marketing strategy to sign up 300 independent hotels before 2020. Marking its first expansion outside Asia, the franchiser is planning to initially launch in 10 British cities in the next 18 months via a smart phone based service for franchise owners and guests.


Bihar’s Silao Khaja Obtains GI

Silao Khaja, a traditional local delicacy from the Nalanda region of Bihar has been granted registration by the GI registry. Silao Khaja is known for its taste, crispiness and multi layered appearance which is attributed to local water and climate of Silao. The application was filed by Silao Khaja Audyogik Swavalambi Sahakari Samiti Limited, an autonomous society in 2017.


City names or geographical location names will not be granted as a trademark to one party as this party cannot monopolize the use of the term at the cost of others.
Author: BIP Trademark Attorneys
BIP’s Trademark Attorneys are among the leading experts in the field. They work with clients such as PEPS, Dharma Productions, Essilor, Samsung and the IITs with respect to trademark filing, prosecution, registration, management, licensing, franchising, merchandizing and strategy.
The weekly trademark news initiative is a part of their pro bono work and is aimed at spreading trademark awareness. You are free to share the news with appropriate attribution and backlink to the source.
If you have any questions, you may write to BIP’s Trademark Attorneys at [email protected]

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