Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
19 May 2000
Hearing Officer
Mr G Salthouse
Applicant for Declaration of Invalidity
Gan Minster Insurance Company Ltd
Registered Proprietor
Gann Management Ltd
Sections 47(2)(a) & 5(2)(b)


Section 47(20(a) & 5(2)(b) - Application for Invalidity unsuccessful

Points Of Interest

  • None


The applicants for a Declaration of Invalidity had two registrations GAN MINSTER and gan minster and device dating from November 1991. The registered proprietors registration dated from 1 September 1993. Both parties operate in the field of financial services.

Much of the applicants evidence post dated the relevant date, including the fact that they changed their name from GAN Minster Insurance Company Limited to GAN Insurance Company Limited on 1 January 1995. A declaration from a trade source which indicated the likelihood of confusion was dated some six years after the relevant date and there was no qualifying statement to the effect that his comments would have related to the conflict in 1993.

Under Section 5(2)(b) the Hearing Officer concluded that similar services were at issue and went on to compare the respective marks GANN RESPOND and GAN MINSTER. While he accepted that the first words in the respective marks were phonetically identical he thought the second words RESPOND and MINSTER would conjure up different meanings. Also services of this nature are likely to be purchased with some care. Overall he thought confusion unlikely.

Full decision O/180/00 PDF document20Kb