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Blockchain: use your trademark strategically

30. april 2018

In the autumn of 2017, the financial outlook was bleak for a manufacturer of iced tea in the US. If the company, called the Long Island Iced Tea Corp, failed to increase its market value on the US stock exchange, it would be delisted.

The solution was a change of name. The company decided on the name Long Blockchain Corp. to which decision the market promptly responded with a 289% increase. At the time, the market responded to the name alone. Subsequently, the company announced its intention primarily to focus on blockchain solutions, instead of the production of iced tea, in the future.

The above example shows a lot about blockchains and trademarks:

"Among other things, it shows that a company's name has great significance for how investors act. At the time when the change of name was announced, no one knew what the future of the Long Island Iced Tea Corp. looked like. The investors acted solely on the expectation that blockchain technology might be part of the business model,” explains partner of Chas. Hude, Attorney Thorbjørn Swanstrøm.

It also shows that blockchain is a buzzword attracting the attention of the investors and the media alike. This is, of course, founded in the high expectations to the potential of the technology.

"Most importantly, however, it shows that the investors are on the lookout for companies with an interest in blockchains. An in-depth, substantial business model is not necessary – later on, the management of Long Blockchain Corp. even admitted that it only had limited experience with blockchain technology,” stresses partner of Chas. Hude, European Patent & Design Attorney Jesper Mark Wenzel.

So if you have an idea for a blockchain-based business or product, it may be a strategically strong move to register a trademark clearly reflecting this. If you then combine your trademark with a patent protecting your technology, you will be able to solidify you position and, potentially, attract the attention of some of the major players on the market. 

Our trademark and patent attorneys are ready to help you on the way!

Blockchains, and especially the cryptocurrency bitcoin, have quickly started to figure in the media headlines. In a series of articles, Chas. Hude will draw an IPR-relevant picture of the technology that is predicted to become just as important as the advent of the internet in the 1990s.

Facts about blockchain:

In short, a blockchain is a digitally distributed database, where a cryptocurrency – such as bitcoin – is used as compensation for the work required for its maintenance. The digitally distributed aspect means that the blockchain relies on a large network of computers cooperating to verify the authenticity of the blockchain.

Figuratively, a blockchain consists of a series of digital blocks linked together in a chronological chain. Each block can store specific information – such as information about a specific transaction or part of a medical register. Due to the technical means by which a block chain is built, it is not possible to go back and change the information stored in a specific block. This means that blockchains can increase the transparency and authenticity of the stored information – something that is not necessarily given by already known systems typically managed by a central institution, such as a bank.