Can you Trademark a colour?
Colour can be an important part in distinguishing your product from others. As much as Trademarking a colour can be valuable for an owner, many companies quickly learn that registering a colour trademark can be in fact not so easy to obtain. This form of Trademark is not considered traditional and is still in a grey area.
An applicant must prove that the colour being registered has required distinctiveness through extensive use (campaigns, marketing, sales etc), meaning that the brand can be recognised through colour and not knowing the brand name. The courts are reluctant to allow any one trader to have a monopoly over a colour.
It’s important to note that should a company successfully trademark a colour they would be covered solely within the same industry.
When registering a colour, one would need to specify the Pantone colour. Pantone colours are colour codes that stand for a specific shade.
Here are some examples of brands who have successfully registered their colour mark:
Tiffany & Co Robin’s Egg Blue Pantone 1837
UPS Brown Pantone 0607298
Barbie Mattel Barbie Pink Pantone 219C
Cadbury Royal Purple Pantone 2685C
Do you want more information on how to set up a proactive IP-strategy? We at Otmore are always up to date with current events in the industry, contact us today and we’re happy to help!