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When protecting a trademark is “essential”

Essential is a commonly used word defined as, “absolutely necessary and extremely important.” However, the word is creating a bone of contention between two companies in the consumer electronics industry.

Andy Rubin, the founder of a new smartphone company called Essential, received a less than warm welcome into what many consider a cult of unique personalities. He and his business now face accusations of trademark infringement over the name of the enterprise. Spigen, their competitor, has sent a cease and desist order, demanding the use of the upstart company’s name to stop.

Lawsuits are no stranger to an industry that is well known for continuing disputes with accusations of copying and theft lobbed continuously.

Spigen holds the trademark for “Essential” covering numerous mobile accessories the company sells to consumers. Those products include phone cases, chargers and headphones. However, the trademark does not cover actual smartphones. Still, Spigen claims that his competitor’s use of “Essential” will create confusion for consumers.

According to legal documents, attorneys representing Spigen note that Essential Products had their trademark application denied twice by the US Patent and Trademark Office. They fear the possibility of confusion with Spigen’s brand.

In a statement, Essential is confident that the claims are without merit. Spigen vowed that they would aggressively protect their trademark.

It is safe to say that victory for both sides is “essential” for the future of their companies.

What’s in a name is perhaps the most valuable asset for any business. Legal protection is “absolutely necessary and extremely important” when their trademarks are at risk.

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