THE COST OF RE-BRANDING Part 1
Imagine having to replace and re-brand every single item in your business? Think about the logistics of replacing everything with your name and logo.
There are so many factors to consider including uniforms, vehicles, signage, websites and stationary – and that list isn’t exhaustive!
Having to re-brand can be more easily avoided with the registration of a legal trademark from the the very start of the establishment of your business.
The Cost Factor
There are several costs to consider where a trademark dispute has forced a business to re-brand.
The most obvious expense is the replacement of branded items. While a new website and stationary may not be an exorbitant expense, the supply of new shopfronts, advertising materials and uniforms all add up to a hefty figure.
Rebranding is less costly, however, compared to court costs. Even where a business doesn’t wish to be involved in a court case, larger companies with deeper pockets may leave them without a choice – and with some substantial legal fees.
An Australian registered trademark costs $163.90 (including GST) per annum. A trademark is valid for ten years, so the total cost would come to $1639; significantly less than the cost of re-branding or legal fees. The cost examples are based on our fees as of December 2018, other firms will have varying fee structures. We thought it was important to put the cost figures in this blog to illustrate that trademark registration is not overly expensive considering the alternative of not being protected.
Small Businesses in Court
Intel Group Pty Ltd were a small Australian company who specialised in labour hire and training. That is, until the larger Intel Corporation (computer chips manufacturer) forced them change their name because of trademark infringement. Intel Group Pty Ltd were able to obtain the business name and domain names, but that does not mean they own the brand within their industry. It is understandable that the larger Intel Corporation known for their computer chips globally would be concern that this small business was using their name as a brand. The computer company had spent hundreds of millions to get their brand globally recognised over the years and felt they had to defend their brand from infringement.
Under common law rights, the first person with a chosen name has the right to continue using it. However, this doesn’t stop business giants from disagreeing, often resulting in the underdog footing the cost of both lawyers and re-branding.
Intel Group labour hire/training company is an example of this, and were forced to re-brand costing tens of thousands to replace all signage, car wraps, stationary, uniforms, re-branding their business and now known as Intaus Group.
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INTAUS Group. Rebranding can be viewed by clicking to their website: http://intausgroup.com.au