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Pay Attention to Subclasses!


Publication date
8 April 2021
European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency
Publication type
  • Case study


An Austrian SME active in the fashion and design industry decided to internationalise its business to China. The SME specialized in making theatrical costumes for artistic companies and theatres and found China’s vast market particularly promising for its products. After initial market research, the SME decided to mainly sell its products online via major e-commerce platforms. In addition, the SME also started working with one distributor who was granted exclusivity for selling the branded products. The SME, understanding the value of its brand, had already registered its trade mark (company name and brand) in Austria and in the EU. After some online research on IP protection in China, the SME realised that it would be possible for them to use the Madrid System trade mark application route to extend their trade mark registration to China. The Madrid System route seemed particularly appealing as it allowed the SME to submit the application in English without the need to engage a local trade mark attorney, thus offering a cost-effective solution. The SME successfully extended the registration of their trade marks to China via the Madrid System application route under the same terms.


8 APRIL 2021
Case study - Pay Attention to Subclasses