Garbo – the start of the partnership
The partnership between Mr Green and Ports Group began back in 2013 when a domain name related need arose at Mr Green that required special skills.
Mr Green reached out to us and expressed a need for a “person who can do the impossible”.
The background was that Mr Green had been trying to acquire a specific domain name for a completely new venture, under a brand name for which they had no previous legal rights. There had been attempts to get in contact with the owner of the domain name through an international domain name brooker, but without success.
Luckily, Ports Group’s domain name consultants have many years’ experience in tracking down owners of domain names, both in acquisition processes such as this, but also for legal actions such as cease-and-desist letters.
After quite a bit of digging, a contact with the owner was established. After that, the negotiation as well as transfer of domain name and ownership was in its entirety handled by Ports Group.
The domain name – garbo.com – was the foundation (and necessity) for Garbo, a brand new venture for Mr Green that today is one of their most prominent sub-brands.
At this stage, Ports Group also formulated a strategy for registration of complementary domain names for minimising the risk of infringements on strategically important domain names.
Consolidation of a global domain name portfolio
After the completion of the Garbo-project, when Ports Group had earned the trust of Mr Green, we were entrusted to initiate the consolidation of all domain names registered by Mr Green. The domain name portfolio contained most of the world’s top-level domains, and were registered at multiple registrars.
The domain name portfolio was eventually consolidated and the entire process was carried out by domain name consultants at Ports Group.
The domain name portfolio is now managed in our Corporate Management service, with dedicated contact, complete overview of domain names and trademarks, and – most importantly – a total outsourcing to Ports Group regarding the administration as well as legal responsibility for the portfolio.
Consolidating a domain name portfolio is the basis for a safe web presence. The domain name is the foundation and a single point of error, if it goes down, everything goes down. After the domain name comes the DNS. The DNS determines the traffic on a domain name, including web and email. This is of course of crucial importance for all companies, but even more important for a digital brand like Mr Green, whose entire business takes place online.
Due to factors beyond our and Mr Greens control, we found ourselves in a situation where we had an extremely small window of time for transferring the DNS-services from a US company, to us. We finally managed to set up and migrate all DNS-services 24 hours before the old services were closed down.
Legal evaluations for avoiding infringements and/or clashes
A crucial part of the partnership between Mr Green and Ports Group are the preliminary legal evaluations regarding new ventures. The Ports Group legal team minimises the risk of Mr Green infringing on other trademarks, or just being perceived as confusingly similar to another established site, that would result in unnecessary badwill.
Watch services, legal actions and domain name disputes
One crucial factor for success in the online gambling business is trust; damage to your brand can have devastating effects.
Therefore, Ports Group continuously monitors the registration of domain names that potentially could pose a threat to Mr Green’s brands, and act accordingly to stop infringements or fraudulent behaviour in order to protect Mr Green and their customers.
As a natural next step after the initial consolidation process, Ports Group identified all domain names that “ought” to be owned by Mr Green, but instead was registered by affiliates or cybersquatters. Ports Group initiated cease-and-desist letters and transferred all domain names to us and incorporated them in the Mr Green domain name portfolio.
Where the cease-and-desist letters have not been enough in order to have the domain names transferred to us, we have proceeded with domain name disputes, such as the UDRP through WIPO. Out of all domain name disputes we have initiated on behalf of Mr Green, we have not lost a single one.
350 domain name registrations within 24 hours
Sometimes a new venture needs to be kept quiet until the last minute. It is a well-known problem that registering a name, domain name or trademark, reveals the intention and (oftentimes) the origin of the venture.
For Mr Green we were at one time able to register about 350 domain names within 24 hours. This would have been impossible without the skills of our team of domain name coordinators, and the relationships with the many domain name registries and registrars worldwide we have spent 20 years to develop.
When a new market appears, such as the App-industry, almost as a nature rule, new ways of infringing and misusing a brand starts to appear. That is especially true with apps since the majority are free.
That is why we, apart from Domain name Watch, have also set up App Watch for Mr Green. The service includes making an initial audit that results in an extensive report on the apps that may be in conflict with your trademark, and/or contain unauthorized references to your brand.
For Mr Green, the App Watch at Ports Group includes continuous reporting of apps that may be infringing on their trademark, in either the title or the description. Just like our other watch services, when a suspected infringement occur, we contact Mr Green and formulate a best procedure for the specific situation.
In Mr Green’s case, we have always proceeded with the appropriate legal actions in order to have the apps taken down as quickly as possible, and thus minimising the potential damage to the Mr Green brand.
In December of 2017, Ports Group represented Mr Green Ltd. in a potentially precedential domain name dispute regarding mr.green. In the domain name dispute, WIPO has taken more holistic view in the assessment of confusing similarity between the domain name and the trademark. Traditional top-level domains, such as .COM, have for a long time been ignored in domain name disputes. However, new top-level domains, such as .GROUP, .COMPANY, .SHOP and so on, gives great cause for the arbitrators to take the entire domain name into consideration, not just its wording. Read more.