World Intellectual Property Organization

From Fast-Food Wagon to Successful Business — Fast S.A. Enterprises (Paraguay)

Emprendimientos Fast S.A. started in 1992 under the name Pancholos as a fast-food retail wagon attended by two people. As time passed, the goods and services dispensed by Pancholos started to be recognized by consumers as quality products.

In 1997 Pancholos acknowledged that one of the priorities that had a direct bearing on the growth of the business was the need for protection of the trademark; the main reasons for that were two, namely:

  1. the level of distinctiveness that the trademark had achieved in the minds of consumers and;
  2. the possibility of third parties using it in bad faith.

And so Pancholos became a trademark for the first time. Then, pursuing the same policy of protection of intellectual property rights, it had other trademarks registered for goods and services provided in connection with the original one, including Pizzolos, Pastolos, Lomitolos and Autocholos.

Its manager said that demand for its products had grown enormously from 1997 to date, and that thanks to the registration of the trademark it had successfully avoided the problem of competitors taking advantage of its efforts.

Such is the level of recognition achieved by the trademark that Pancholos has been growing rapidly, and at present has more than 120 people working in nine separate locations within Paraguay. It has a total of five trademarks under which it sells hamburgers, steak sandwiches, chips, pizzas and pasta. It has also a domain name of its own and its own website (www.pancholos.com).

As part of its growth plan, Pancholos makes use of electronic commerce as a means of selling its wares; orders can be placed on the website for home delivery, which has greatly increased the company’s revenue. It would not have been possible, however, if Pancholos had not had its own website and domain name: any consumer can enter the name in a search engine, find the page and place an order.

At present Pancholos is working on a franchising plan with a view to expanding and breaking into new markets. That will enable it to accumulate additional resources using the company’s intangible assets, including its trademarks, business secrets and software, the latter being protected by copyright. For Pancholos, its ownership of intellectual property rights has been a matter of policy since 1997, and has acquired more and more importance as the business has expanded and the trademark become more famous.

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