Intellectual Property

An interesting scenario has developed regarding the name of our business. Having tried to incorporate under the name of “Leaf Tea Company” we received an objection and had to quickly go back to the drawing board.

After almost 12 months of thinking of ourselves as “Leaf Tea Company” it felt odd to have to reinvent ourselves. But more to the point, finding available company names is a difficult process. I would say that it is, so far, one of the most challenging things we have had to overcome.

We need a name that is available with Companies House, available as as a .com and domain and also something that checks safely with the IPO – the UK’s trademark office.

David arranged a meeting with the Intellectual Property Office located at the British Library. A very helpful and knowledgeable lady talked us through the things to be aware of – all of which very obvious and confirmed that we really did need to have a totally unique name.

Days of searching thousands of word combinations uncovered “Tea Traders”. We thought we had struck gold – nice alliteration – and in our rush to get the incorporation process complete, decided to go with it. But this also proved to be problematic. The .com was already owned by a chap in the USA but we contacted him in the hope that he might sell us the domain. He wasn’t interested and his best offer came in at $100K, which was slightly over our budget.

Did we really need a .com as well as a The short answer of course is yes if we want to have a global online presence so it was back to the drawing board again to come up with another name.

The number of parked domain names that are sitting waiting for people like us to get desperate enough to consider paying thousands of pounds to secure something appropriate is a real bone of contention for me. Unlike with trademarks there was never any governance set up over domain ownership and so the hundreds of great potential names that we could have had sit dormant and unusable.

However, we are now “The Tea Studio”. I think it works well and actually probably suits our business better than either of the two previous options, encompassing our business model of tea and art very neatly.

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