Itanium name games

Intel’s lawyers have contacted DIC retailer and UAE reseller Itanium Computers as part of ongoing attempts to persuade the company to adopt a new brand identity. The processor giant produces a range of processors under the Itanium brand and wants to avoid any confusion in the market.

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By  Stuart Wilson Published  February 16, 2005

Intel’s lawyers have contacted DIC retailer and UAE reseller Itanium Computers as part of ongoing attempts to persuade the company to adopt a new brand identity. The processor giant produces a range of processors under the Itanium brand and wants to avoid any confusion in the market. Itanium (the reseller) registered the name four years ago and will be reluctant to change a name that its customers now know well. Naief Alami, CEO and president at Itanium Computers, said: “Intel lawyers sent threatening letters trying to force us to change our name. We have shown them that we registered the Itanium name both inside and outside the free zone back in 2001.” “It is important to understand that we are not selling any products under the Itanium brand, it is just the name of the company. We are reluctant to change the name because it creates confusion for customers both inside and outside the UAE, as well as with suppliers,” he added. Dania El-Kadi, PR manager Middle East and Africa at Intel, said: “Intel lawyers from Europe approached Itanium as part of a fact-finding mission. There is a trademark issue here but we are in negotiations with Itanium to see how we can work this out. It depends on when the company was registered and this will determine how the situation is resolved.” Talks are ongoing between the two parties to find a mutually acceptable settlement as soon as possible. Trademark law is a complex area at the best of times and this situation is probably no exception. With Intel posting global after-tax profits of US$7.52bn in 2004, it should have no problems scraping together a compelling financial settlement that allows Itanium (the reseller) to build up a new brand identity. Watch this space.

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