Corporate News

Megaworld loses Trump brand case

Posted on May 23, 2012

MEGAWORLD CORP. has lost a trademark dispute to American tycoon Donald J. Trump after the Court of Appeals (CA) recently affirmed an administrative decision favoring the foreign businessman.

A RENDERING shows Megaworld Corp.’s “One Central� condominium project in Makati City, formerly named “The Trumps.� --
In a decision promulgated on May 11, the CA’s Special 17th Division upheld the June 2009 decision of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines director-general declaring that “The Trumps� -- which Megaworld wanted to be used to brand a condominium project in Makati City -- was “identical and/or confusingly similar� to the tycoon’s trademark “Trump.�

The case started in June 2007 when Mr. Trump filed a notice of opposition at the state agency’s Bureau of Legal Affairs (BLA) against Megaworld’s trademark application.

Megaworld, for its part, argued that Mr. Trump’s mark “is not well-known internationally and in the Philippines.�

The local real estate firm also stated that brand was coined from “trump,� which in turn originated from “triumph.� The bureau in January 2008 initially sided with Megaworld. But the office of the director-general reversed it in June 2009.

Megaworld then appealed the case with the CA even as it had already renamed its project to “One Central.�

The CA ruled there was “no cogent reason to deviate from the findings of the [director-general].�

The court further noted the popularity of Mr. Trump’s show The Apprentice which is aired here. -- A. E. Barrameda