December 19, 2014
How much of your shopping was done online this year?
Check out this latest newsletter by Kim Highley to make sure you know your rights and keep yourself safe online over the holiday period.
We suspect that like 50% of UK Citizens this year, you will have used the internet to buy more than half of your Christmas presents. This figure is at an all-time high and whilst online shopping offers so many advantages, there are also risks in the form of e-crime and online fraud which we should all keep in mind.
So why has the online shopping revolution really picked up pace this year? Many analysts in the Etail sector believe it is thanks to the development of easy to use apps for smartphones and tablet computers. Add in to the equation enticing offers from major retailers, not just on Black Friday and Cyber Monday but all season. For example, Amazon, Marks and Spencer, Currys and Asos have offered as much as 70% off some of their lines this month. With such high demand and enticement it is hardly surprising that some websites have gone down with technical difficulties.
We set out below some crucial golden tips for your next digital purchases, whether these are for last minute presents or the January sale items.
December 10, 2014
Things regularly go wrong at trade shows. The usual phone call we get is either just before or just as the first day of the trade show opens and lo and behold some copy product is launched to an unsuspecting public!
If you are doing this then do be aware that in some European countries, the law will CLOSE YOU DOWN and ask the questions later…France springs to mind. Two directors I know of spent an uncomfortable 2 nights in a German prison at the start of one trade show. Even in the UK it isn’t unheard of for lawyers to serve Court Orders at trade shows, and then have goods seized or removed from sale. However, in the UK we normally reserve prison only in the case of contempt of Court if you don’t comply with a Court Order.
Chinese Car Manufacturer Copies Range Rover Evoque…
Pity poor old Land Rover this week in China at the Guangzhou Motor Show, when a local car manufacturer launched a £14,000 copy of their prestigious Range Rover Evoque. The Evoque is sold in China at around £40,000 and is made by a Chinese Joint Venture company comprised of Jaguar Land Rover and Chinese company Chery. What is sad about this situation is that such copying can actually destroy jobs in China and this behaviour makes even the big companies think twice about expensive JV’s with local companies and serious investment in an emerging economy.
Whilst no doubt Jaguar Land Rover’s IP experts are now crawling over the details of the design of the car and will undertake serious analysis of what is an identical component and what is simply over borrowed, this isn’t the first time the manufacturers LandWind have copied a European car. A few years ago LandWind launched a copy Vauxhall Frontera. This model was briefly sold in Europe until crash test failures forced its withdrawal from sale in European countries.
In order to succeed in China and through the local Courts, Land Rover will have to prove slavish copying of their design. This may deter them from taking action in China. Where there has been slavish copying the Chinese will close a factory down. However, I suspect LandWind have been too clever to get caught by that trap and have designed around any direct copy but have used the “look” of the Evoque to capture the bottom end of the car market in the Far East.
All of which goes to show that even the big names with all their resources can be copied in China. It’s a crying shame. It is far easier to copy than to innovate.
However, one thing the big companies will have in their favour is that they will have registered their brand as a trade mark. At the end of the day the LandWind car won’t ever have the Land Rover brand name on it, and its sales will be limited simply by virtue of the lack of brand awareness.
There’s a lesson here. If you want to export ALWAYS register your trade mark first!