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Trademark Update: Kenya

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Renewal of overdue trademarks in Kenya – an update

As reported previouslythe Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI) has recently begun an initiative to rid its Trade Marks Register of all unwanted trade mark registrations by publishing Special Industrial Property Journals containing trade marks that have not been timeously renewed by their respective proprietors. This is part of what KIPI calls the “Trade Marks Registry Upgrading Project”. 

The first such journal was published on 15 June 2020 containing about 2,000 marks, with a second journal published on 15 December 2020 containing about 2,600 marks and a third on 15 February 2021 containing about 2,500 marks. This brings the total number of marks set to be removed from the Register to just over 7,000. The journals have all been uploaded onto KIPI’s website. 

The journal offers trade mark proprietors a statutory 30-day period to pay the prescribed ordinary and late renewal fees, failing which the relevant marks will be removed from the Register. If a mark listed in the Journal has been renewed and included in error, the trade mark proprietor also has the opportunity to have the official records updated by providing proof of the renewal to KIPI. 

KIPI also mentioned in a Public Notice issued on 21 December 2020 that it is sending notices regarding the non-renewed marks to the proprietors thereof, but we recommend that trade mark owners still be vigilant and check the journals or instruct their trade mark attorneys to do so to ensure that none of their marks are inadvertently included.  

View this article in World Trademark Review here.

By Adré Pretorius, Trademark Attorney.