Until December 8, 2023, for all small and medium-sized enterprises registered in the EU, there is an opportunity to receive a grant for trademark registration under the pan-European procedure. Under the terms of the grant, 75% of the administrative fee and additional class fees are returned to the enterprise. This year Ukrainian entrepreneurs also can receive reimbursement for EU TM registration. Many plan to enter a foreign market, particularly the EU market.
Who can benefit?
SME Fund provides Access to financing under the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) program. The main factors determining whether an enterprise is an SME are staff headcount, turnover or balance sheet total.
Under EU law, a medium-sized company is a business with up to 250 employees and up to €50 million turnover. Small enterprises have up to 50 employees and up to €10 million turnover. Micro-enterprises with up to 10 employees and a turnover of €2 million can also apply for a trademark and reimbursement.
So you receive 75% of the administration fee or 637 euros of compensation to the company's account. The registration of the EU TM will cost only €212. Each class of goods and services is additionally paid but is also subject to a 75% reimbursement.
What do you need to start?
You can apply for registration of an EU TM by contacting the EUIPO. It accepts all official languages as working languages. At the same time, it is necessary to indicate the TM itself, the type of business activity or already selected classes of goods and services according to the International (Nice) Classification of Goods and Services, and the applicant's details. It is also necessary to provide documents confirming the status of small and medium-sized enterprises and a request for a refund of 75% of the fees.
It should be noted that you have to pay 100% of the official fee. But 75% of the payment will return to the account within one to two months.
Why TM EU?
A registered trademark is the basis for business, and EU TM opens the European market. This is an opportunity to scale the business, transfer it to the European market with many solvent customers or diversify the business. It is also a protection of intellectual property. That is the opportunity to protect and preserve your unique naming already in the large and promising EU market.
The certificate for the EU TM allows you to use trademarks not only on their own but also to find other ways to monetize your business in the European market, for example, for issuing licenses to local businesses and selling franchises for certain territories.
Thirdly, to do business in the EU, a registered TM is often a common practice and a necessary minimum to enter into contracts with counterparties, participate in exhibitions, place your own signs, place goods on marketplaces, etc. A registered trademark can become your primary marketing tool and help to position your goods and services on marketplaces.
Indeed, it's an attractive opportunity to fill out one application and to receive TM and IP protection on the territory of all EU countries for ten years and the possibility of extending for the same period an unlimited number of times.
What are the deadlines?
The program is running until December 8, 2023. So it is already possible to request the funding. The only moment is a fixed budget of €27.1 million for refunds. That is why we recommend starting this process as soon as possible. Just know approximately 150,000 trademarks are registered in United Europe every year.
It is vital for success to check if a trademark is already registered in the EU or one of the EU countries. To avoid the refusal of registration of TM, we recommend that you conduct an informational search for the identity and similarity of your trademark to those registered or submitted for registration. So you can minimize the risks of refusal to register or objections. Thus, your registration budget will be spent most consciously. And based on the search results, it will be possible to adjust your strategy. As an option, if necessary, modify the TM to register for the European market.
If you would like advice on EU TM registration, budget optimization, or minimizing the risks for entering the global market, text us at email@example.com or call +380 68 664 19 79. Our Ukrainian and European IPSTYLE offices team is here to help you correctly classify and protect your intellectual property.