BMW fleet arm reviewing Google name change
Alphabet, BMW's fleet management company, has said it is reviewing a possible trademark infringement from Google's holding company, Alphabet
On 10 August, Google revealed the creation of a new holding company, Alphabet, as part of a surprise restructure.
Larry Page, chief executive officer of Alphabet and one of the co-founders of Google, said: “We’ve long believed that over time companies tend to get comfortable doing the same thing, just making incremental changes. But in the technology industry, where revolutionary ideas drive the next big growth areas, you need to be a bit uncomfortable to stay relevant.”Our company is operating well today, but we think we can make it cleaner and more accountable. So we are creating a new company, called Alphabet. I am really excited to be running Alphabet as CEO with help from my capable partner, Sergey [Brin], as President.”
According to Reuters, there are currently 103 trademark registrations in the United States that include the word ‘alphabet’ or some close variation. In order from something to be a trademark infringement, the original owner would have to prove some likelihood of confusion among consumers between the two brands.
When announcing the new holding company, Page said: “we are not intending for this to be a big consumer brand with related products–the whole point is that Alphabet companies should have independence and develop their own brands.”
The news has been met positively by the stock market, with shares up 6% at the time of writing.
BMW’s fleet arm Alphabet issued the following statement: “As being reported in the media, Google has founded a holding company called Alphabet. The website www.alphabet.com is owned by BMW Group, Alphabet’s parent company.
“The possibility of any trademark infringement is currently under review.”