If you are planning to start a business in Dubai or UAE, you have to take care of certain aspects. After you have gone through company registration process, another matter requires your attention during 2024. To distinguish your business from others, you need to register a trademark.
It is a necessary action in your initial business planning. But its impact is evident throughout the life cycle of your business. Trademark registration is one of the integral processes that you need to carry out once you start your business. However, it comes after the initial procedures of your business setup like deciding the name, and registration of the company.
When this is all set, proceed to the registration of your business trademark. In this article, we explain you in detail the definition of trademark and its significance for your company. Also, you will know its legal value and the trademark registration procedure.
What is a trademark?
In essence, a trademark is an integral type of intellectual property that plays significant role in business formation process. Trademark is a unique indicator that businesses or legal entities use to identify their products/services in the consumers’ minds. It can consist of a letter, word, sign, figure or any of the combination.
Trademark is a form of intellectual property. Accordingly, trademarks distinguish the services or products of a business from those of its competitors. Trademarks are protected by the UAE trademark law which was formed in 1996, and amended in 2002, and then 2021.
Importance of trademarks for businesses in Dubai
Entrepreneurs usually spend quite a lot of time in choosing their company names. They spend huge amount of money designing their company’s logo, and go through the process of business registration. After obtaining the license, they put much efforts in initiating their company and gaining identity for it.
Many entrepreneurs do not pay attention to an aspect which is the security of their identification. How can you ensure that no other business takes advantage of the goodwill of your business? Can you safeguard the credibility of your company without a trademark?
Why businesses need to register a trademark?
A trademark affect a company’s reputation and thus customers’ buying decisions. Moreover, understanding the value of business trademarks is a must in an expanding market like Dubai. Together with brand value, it eventually helps in the business growth.
This is why registration of trademarks is essential. You may or may not realize it but you come across trademarks on a daily basis. Keep in mind that a trademark is another mean to refer to a brand.
Reasons for businesses to register a trademark
Here, we list down seven reasons why businesses must go about registration of a trademark in Dubai in 2024.
- Exclusive ownership of business
- Global ownership rights
- Prevention of duplicity
- Valuable asset for your brand
- Effective communication tool
- Simpler identification
- Ease the hiring process
Now, we take a look on these motives behind the need to register a trademark.
Exclusive ownership of business
As the sole owner of your company you have to feel secure. Trademark registration gives you the guaranteed entitlement to the resources and investment that you have made on your business. It is an affordable way which legally ensures only you the name or logo which you use for your business.
Global proprietorship rights
A business trademark not only covers nationwide protection but it applies for all over the world. It gives you a unique identification not only in few chosen locations but around the globe. Therefore, you have an opportunity to spread your wings and expand your business.
Prevention of duplicity
Trademark protects your ownership rights and protects your from brand duplicity. If other entrepreneurs are searching for logos in official records, your trademark symbol will appear thus preventing re-use. Just in case, a company tries to use your logo for their business as against the law. Then, you have all the right to sue them for illegal creation of duplicate trademark.
Valuable asset for your brand
Remember that brand value of a company increases once you register its trademark. Also, the more good your company’s reputation becomes, more is the brand value. It gets easy for you to expand from one business vertical to another.
For example, from clothing to shoes or accessories. Even if, at a certain point you decide to sell your business. Your famous trademark will bring a higher compensation for it.
Effective communication tool
Trademarks portray intellectual and emotional elements of your company, its reputation, products and services. Trademark can merely be a design irrespective of the language. For instance, Nike’s “swoosh” is globally recognizable irrespective of the language of person whether English, Chinese, French, or Arabic.
In a busy market like Dubai, it is difficult to distinguish your services/products from that of your competitors. Dubai Chamber of Economy and Commerce issued 30,146 new business licenses in the 1st half of 2023. Department of Economic Development reported a 43% increase from 21,098 companies licensed in the 1st half of 2022. These figures emphasize that in such a competitive market, you have to take your game a little notch up.
Trademarks make your products stand out and get customer attention. Upon seeing a trademark, customers immediately know about your company and what is its reputation. Thus, having a popular trademark influences the buying decisions of the consumers.
Ease the hiring process
In the event, your company has good reputation, it creates positive feelings in minds of the people. Henceforth, candidates will feel more attraction towards your company. Their willingness to become a part of your company, makes the hiring process easier for you.
Registration process of trademark in Dubai
The following is the step-by-step procedure to register a trademark in Dubai through 2024.
The first step requires you to put forward an application form to the Ministry of Economy and Commerce. All the details in application form should be in Arabic. Make sure to put all the compulsory details there.
The ministry goes through the application form and approves it. Just in the event, the Ministry finds some missing or inappropriate information. Then, the application is refused and a report is prepared by the Ministry citing the reason.
If such case arises, applicant is notified in writing of the reasons of the decision. The decision on the registration application is made by the Ministry within 30 days from the submission date. Entrepreneurs know the true status of their applications whether it meets the conditions and circumstances provided by the Law.
It is up to applicants whether they choose to accept the report or reject it. If the applicants reject it, they can file a plea with the trademark’s committee of the ministry within 30 days. If again, the Committee sustains the Ministry’s decision of rejection of application or to meet certain conditions before acceptance. Then, the applicant can challenge the committee’s decision before the competent civil court within 60 days after the notification.
Upon approval of trademark application by the Ministry (after resolution of all issues), Registrar publishes it in the Trademark Journal. Also, the registrar publishes it in Dubai’s two leading Arabic newspapers at the expense of registration applicant. It’s a 30 day period in which a legal identity can respond if it has any objection to the trademark.
In case, the Ministry receives a request of objection. It notifies the registration applicant with a copy of the objection to his request within 15 days from receipt of such request. Furthermore, applicant is given 30 days to take appropriate action for the objection.
Upon applicant’s response, it is up to Ministry to approve or reject the trademark. In case of rejection, applicant has the right to go for an appeal to the Committee in the Trademark Office. If the Committee refuses the appeal, applicant may challenge the decision to the competent court.
In case of approval, the applicant is required to notify the federal and local bodies as well as the Chambers of Commerce & Industry. Then, the applicant has to provide these concerned authorities with further details. Once published trademark is registered and certificate of registration is issued, applicant is the sole owner of the trademark.
The following the final requirements of the final step of the trademark application process.
- A notarized and legally attested Power of Attorney (POA) submitted to the UAE Consulate.
- Late submission of POA can be made as late as within the 60 days from the filing date.
- Twenty prints of the trademark. (Size: 6 cm x 6 cm)
- A copy of certified home/foreign application registration, in case priority is claimed.
Trademark registration time, validity, and renewal
Usually, the trademark registration procedure takes 4-5 months of time in Dubai (and the UAE). The period of protection resulting from the registration of a trademark is 10 years. Subsequently, business owners can renew the trademark for further 10 years.
You must submit the application for the renewal of trademark in the last year of the protection period. In case of late renewal application, you get a grace period of three months upon payment of late fine. The news of the trademark renewal is to be published in Trademark Journal and two local Arabic newspapers.
Business consultants are your best option for clarification on trademarks or resolving difficulties in their implementation amid 2024. They work closely with every client to ensure that the trademark registration process is smooth. You get all the assistance at each stage of the procedure.
Contact our experts at KWS Middle East as they provide all the services for new company formation in Dubai. They will assist your company in acquiring business license and trademark approval in less time. With us, you don’t face any complication or delays for effective running of your business in Dubai.
For further information, connect one of the experts at KWS-ME and get a free consultation.
Abut the author