WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Siemens AG v. Private Registrations Aktien Gesellschaft
Case No. D2011-1163
1. The Parties
Complainant is Siemens AG of Munich, Germany, represented by Müller Fottner Steinecke, Germany.
Respondent is Private Registrations Aktien Gesellschaft of Kingstown, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <siemensenterprise.com> is registered with Network Solutions, LLC.
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on July 8, 2011. On July 11, 2011, the Center transmitted by email to Network Solutions, LLC a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On July 11, 2011, Network Solutions, LLC transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details.
The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on July 13, 2011. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was August 2, 2011. Problems with the electronic notification of the Complaint (Notification of Complaint and Commencement of the Administrative Proceeding) have been identified by the Center, which it appears was not correctly forwarded to the relevant WhoIs-listed, Registrar-confirmed email addresses of record. Accordingly, the Complaint was re-notified to the correct email addresses of record on August 5, 2011 and the Response due date was thereby re-set to August 25, 2011. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent’s default on August 26, 2011.
The Center appointed Halvor Manshaus as the sole panelist in this matter on September 1, 2011. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.
4. Factual Background
Complainant is a German company, and is one of the largest companies in the world within the fields of electrical engineering and general electronics.
Complainant can trace its operations back more than 150 years, and has registered several trademarks containing the name "Siemens" in several countries throughout the world, including Community trademark No. 4240263 SIEMENS.
Respondent is a company registered in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
The disputed domain name <siemensenterprise.com> was registered on March 9, 2001. The Registrar is Network Solutions LLC.
5. Parties’ Contentions
Complainant argues that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant's trademark SIEMENS.
Complainant further holds that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. Complainant asserts that Respondent is not, and has never been, one of Complainant's representatives, employees or one of its licensees, nor does Respondent own any mark SIEMENS. Complainant maintains that Respondent's intention is to mislead or divert customers to the disputed domain name <siemensenterprise.com>, tarnishing the SIEMENS mark.
Complainant further holds that Respondent has registered and is using the disputed domain name in bad faith. According to Complainant, Respondent intends to use the strong reputation of SIEMENS in order to confuse the public and to cause damage to Complainant, as Respondent uses the disputed domain name solely for providing sponsored links, some of which refer to Complainant's products. Complainant also makes reference to the fact that Respondent is previously known to the Panel, having being regarded as a cybersquatting business in Bayerische Motoren Werke AG v. Private Registrations Aktien Gesellschaft, WIPO Case No. D2010-0898.
Respondent did not reply to Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
From the presented evidence, Complainant has demonstrated its rights to the mark SIEMENS through its registration and use of said mark. The disputed domain name <siemensenterprise.com> incorporates in full the distinctive trademark SIEMENS.
Further, Complainant has numerous affiliates throughout the world featuring denominations containing SIEMENS as the dominant element, such as "Siemens Enterprise Communications LTD" in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and "Siemens Enterprise Communications GmbH & Co. KG" in Germany. Said affiliates provide goods and services through the registered domain name <siemens-enterprise.com>.
The disputed domain name only differs from Complainant's domain name <siemens-enterprise.com> by omitting the hyphen between the terms "Siemens" and "Enterprise".
Also, it follows from previous UDRP decisions that the mere addition of a generic or common term such as "enterprise" to a registered trademark is insufficient to avoid confusing similarity between a domain name and the trademark of a complainant. Reference is made to Swarovski Aktiengesellschaft v. Kimi DeLuca, WIPO Case No. D2007-0252; PepsiCo, Inc. v. PEPSI, SRL and EMS Computer Industry, WIPO Case No. D2003-0696; PepsiCo, Inc. v. Diabetes Home Care, Inc. and DHC Services, WIPO Case No. D2001-0174; and Parfums Christian Dior v. 1 Netpower, Inc., WIPO Case No. D2000-0022.
Thus, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant's mark SIEMENS.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
Respondent does not, according to Complainant, have any rights to, or legitimate interests in, the disputed domain name, and is not commonly known by the disputed domain name.
The Respondent is not called “Siemens” or anything similar, nor does Respondent appear to trade under that name or any related name.
There is no evidence that Complainant has authorized Respondent to use its trademark. Respondent has never asserted any rights or legitimate interests in the name "Siemens".
It follows from previous UDRP decisions that it is sufficient for a complainant to make a prima facie showing of its assertion under paragraph 4(c) and 4(a)(ii) of the Policy, cf. the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Second Edition ("WIPO Overview 2.0"), paragraph 2.1. The presented evidence and circumstances referred to by Complainant is, in the Panel's view, sufficient to establish a prima facie showing that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
The Panel therefore, on the basis of the available record, concludes that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The website corresponding to the disputed domain name consists solely of sponsored links, some of which refer to or have previously referred to Complainant's products. Websites solely consisting of sponsored links such as these, earn revenue through the advertised links on the site, meaning that Respondent achieves or may achieve commercial gain when web users, searching for “Siemens” or “Siemens Enterprise” products, are diverted to the website corresponding to the disputed domain name.
The Panel accepts Complainant's assertion that Respondent was aware of the SIEMENS trademark and company name at the time of registering the disputed domain name. SIEMENS is a mark that is well-known throughout the world. Further, the sponsored links refer to or have previously referred to some of Complainant's products.
The Panel finds that Respondent, by registering and using the disputed domain name, seeks to use the confusing similarity between Complainant's well-known trademark and the disputed domain name for the purpose of intentionally attracting Internet users to the website corresponding to the disputed domain name, thus causing damage to Complainant's business and tarnishing Complainant's trademark, whilst at the same time achieving or making it possible to achieve commercial gain through this diversion. The Panel finds that Respondent is "trading off" the reputation of Complainant.
Respondent is also already known to the Panel, having been described as a "serial cybersquatter" in Bayerische Motoren Werke AG v. Private Registrations Aktien Gesellschaft, WIPO Case No. D2010-0898. A search of the publicly available UDRP decisions reveals that – in addition to the already mentioned decision – seven decisions have recently been made against Respondent in UDRP cases.
Thus, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
Complainant has requested that the disputed domain name <siemensenterprise.com> be transferred to Complainant.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain name, <siemensenterprise.com>, be transferred to Complainant.
Dated: September 13, 2011