easyGroup has lost a landmark ruling against a London-based stockbroker over the right to use the wo...
easyGroup has lost a landmark ruling against a London-based stockbroker over the right to use the word 'easy'in its name.
FSA-regulated equity brokerage Easybroker International has successfully defended its position against easyGroup after the owner of the airline, car and internet access firm attempted to block Easybroker's registration of its name as a trademark in 2001.
The decision to overrule Stelios' action has not come as a significant surprise to Easybroker's founder, Savvas Liasis, however, as it was previously ruled by the World Intellectual Property Organization that "easy" is a common word and no company can claim rights over it.
This ruling is further underlined by the UK High Court, which has also informed the easyGroup that it had no rights over the word "easy" and could not prevent anyone from registering a company or domain using the word.
Today's ruling by the UK Trademark Registry, is at least a celebration for small firms placed under pressure by companies such as easyGroup, because it is the smaller companies which usually do not have the financial resources to fight a legal battle.
Liasis had attempted to settle the dispute amicably with Stelios Haji-Ioannou, owner of easyGroup, says a statement from Easybroker, because the two parties had known each other for some time, both personally and professionally.
Easybroker International had started trading in London in February 1999 but it was only in 2001 when Liasis applied to register the company name.
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