Where to register a WIPO base trademark?

Trademark Law

Why does it make sense to register a WIPO base mark for internationalization in a particularly small country?

When a brand is expanded or internationalized via the Madrid system, a national base brand must be available. When internationalized via the Madrid system, the basic brand becomes an important basis for all other international brands.

An international registration is always based on a basic trademark. If the original base mark approved on which the WIPO expansion is based is revoked, the WIPO mark will also expire. That can mean a loss of international brands and a disaster for an internationalisation.

Often trademarks are deleted or revoked if older rights are infringed by older trademarks. Sometimes it is difficult to predict which trademarks have earlier rights and only a court can clarify which rights are earlier rights.

For example, particularly small countries such as Switzerland or Liechtenstein have a very high number of directly approved trademarks that are expanded through WIPO.

In particularly small countries such as Switzerland or Liechtenstein, the probability that an older trademark is registered is lower because the number of registered trademarks is significantly lower. This also means that the likelihood of the basic trademark being withdrawn is lower.

A little over 0.5 million trademarks are registered in Switzerland, while around 62 million trademarks are listed in the EU trademark database. For example, if you choose an EU trademark as the basis for the WIPO trademark, then it is possible that the EU trademark from one of the 27 EU countries will be attacked due to older rights (or directly at the EU level).

If, for example, the EU trademark is successfully attacked on the basis of an older right in Luxembourg, then it is possible that the WIPO base trademark will also expire as a result.

This is probably one of the reasons why many big brands choose a small country like Switzerland to allow a brand there that serves as the basis for internationalization via WIPO.

Smaller countries with fewer registered trademarks are usually better suited for a WIPO basic trademark.

Another benefit of Switzerland is that the WIPO is located in Berne in Switzerland and Swiss laws are published in major languages like English, German, French, Italian and Romanian.

If you want to register a trademark in Switzerland, we can register the trademark as your representative and you do not need a domicile address or place of residence, or company headquarters in Switzerland.

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