What’s in a name? To many businesses, it’s everything. That’s especially when it’s what identifies you in this virtual world called the Internet.
In December of 2005, the .EU domain namespace—for the European Union—was launched, with plans to open for public sale by April of 2006. The .EU domain registry gave companies a sunrise period to already register their trademarks. But with a lot of companies sharing the same name, this had been a problem.
For instance, POLO is a registered trademark of Volkswagen (the mid-range sedan), Nestlé (the mint candy) and Ralph Lauren (the clothes line). Guess who snagged the polo.eu domain—Volkswagen did! The three were reportedly within only five minutes of each other in registering. And Volkswagen only beat Ralph Lauren by three minutes!
So here’s some advice to those planning to set up a company, or those with existing businesses: make sure you register your domain early!