Bizarre Chinese Brand Approved By Pro-Life and Pro-Choice

Sometimes it is better to avoid literal translations. This might be an example:  金 jīn 胚 pēi 玉 yù 米 mǐ 油 yóu = gold embryo corn oil. The association with embryos, even if they are golden, and corn oil, is probably not the most conducive to whet one’s appetite.  Photos are shot in a lift in Fu Tian Ti Yu Gong Yuan, […]

Chinese Trademarks Visible, But Have By Far Not Met Their Potential

In absolute numbers China might be in almost all aspects a giant. But in relative sense this does not need to be the case. Example: China has 5 million registered trademarks. But only one out of 10 market entities owns a registered trademark and the number is 40 percent for companies, Yuan Qi, an official […]

Emergent brandscape in China: “Sony was not built in a day”

David Barboza interviewed Karl Gerth who teaches modern Chinese history at Oxford University about his new book ‘As China Goes So Does The World’. Professor Gerth is optimistic about Chinese brands. His take is that China will get strong brands indigenously or it will acquire foreign brands. We just have to give it some time: […]

Paradox of Strong Brands in China: Cause And Cure of Counterfeiting

If you have a strong brand, chances are that your trademark will be counterfeited in China. The counterfeiter can simply manufacture unauthorised copies of a popular brand: no developing costs, no marketing costs, and certainty about the demand. Then again chances are very slim that a company with a strong brand will counterfeit your trademark. […]

Uncreative Brand, Creative Brand in China

Uncreative Brand In Yangshuo, next to Guilin, Guangxi province, you can see one of the most characteristic mountains of China. But if you bike through the village, you will notice some interesting shops as well. Almost next to each other you can see a shop that embodies the old copycat mentality and one that characterises […]

Brand Politics: China Should Take Advantage of Chinese Design

“Chinese companies still copy a lot of foreign design. The most important thing for China is that its businesses learn the importance of design and start designing for themselves.” Read the whole article ‘Brand Politics’, in which yours truly was interviewed by Adam Smith for World Trademark Review here (pdf).

Safe Your Logo: Make Dragons More Vital

Message from IP Dragon Duncan Bucknell of Duncan Bucknell Company wrote on his IP Think Tank Blog, see here, about an initiative that invites companies that use a certain animal in their logo to make a contribution that that animal does not become extinct. This makes sense. The love should come from two sides, not […]

No, I Don’t Believe the Starbucks’ counsel Who Said: “Chinese Customers Refill Cup With Coffee From Other Brands”

Mark Aoki-Fordham, director and corporate counsel at Starbucks Coffee Company said something … well outlandish: “We are still trying to educate Chinese customers about why our coffee is a good beverage to drink at all times of day — and we’ve found that they are not the most loyal,” Aoki-Fordham noted. “They love our brand; […]

“Class” Justice in Trademark Rights: Lan Kwai Fong

Lan Kwai Fong, an L-shaped expat-trap of bars and restaurants in Central, Hong Kong Island, founded by Allan Zeman (see its history here), is that well known in China and Macau many registered the name in all kinds of classes. Neil Gough and Denise Tsang of the South China Morning Post wrote (September 14th) that […]

Zhongnanhai Cigarettes? White House Cigars? Kremlin Wodka?

Xin Dingding and Wang Huazhong report on an anti-tobacco non-governmental organisation (NGO) called Think Tank Research Center for Health Development, that submitted a petition on April 14, 2009 to the Beijing Trademark Office to stop the use of Zhongnanhai, the complex of buildings in Beijing which serves as the central headquarters of the Communist Party […]

Must Read Monday: “Shan Zhai Ji” in Most Searched List

Sky Canaves and Juliet Ye of the Wall Street Journal’s China Journal Blog dealt with the top ten lists of 2008. Although most Chinese use Baidu, and Google is used by some of the higher educated Chinese, the most searched terms can give an indication of what is hot and what is not in […]

Shuanghuan, Not Known For It’s Originality, Has A Very Similar Logo To Ssangyong’s Old Logo

Dram Man, a blogging American IP lawyer in South Korea pointed out in a comment on the Noble versus Smart story that the Shuanghuan logo is very similar to that of the former Korean automobile manufacturer Ssangyong Motor Company, which is now owned for 51 percent by Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation. Thanks Dram Man. Logo […]

Brandjacking Brand Value Down The Drain

Jeff Roberts of McGill’s CIPP’s “IP News This Week”, your 5-minute report of the latest IP news from around the world, pointed me again to an interesting article, this time about brandjacking in China. Read the article ‘Bleach, By Yves St Laurent’ by Lauren Mills for the Mail on Sunday via Industry Watch, here.

Haier Files 2.6 Patent Applications Per Day

Gao Hucheng, the Vice-Minister of Commerce, wrote an article about the need for China to improve its brands and IPRs in order to become internationally more competitive. Haier, the Chinese posterchild that is taking its brand very serious, “put[s] forth 2.6 patents each day on average and takes the lead among all household appliance enterprises […]