WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
JD Sports Fashion PLC v. Junjie Wang
Case No. D2016-1897
1. The Parties
The Complainant is JD Sports Fashion PLC of Lancashire United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland ("UK"), represented by Urquhart-Dykes & Lord, UK.
The Respondent is Junjie Wang of Sherman Oaks, UK.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <jdsportsshop.com> (the "Domain Name") is registered with eNom, Inc. (the "Registrar").
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the "Center") on September 16, 2016. On September 19, 2016, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Name. On September 19, 2016, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the 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 and 4, the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on September 20, 2016. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was October 10, 2016. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent's default on October 12, 2016.
The Center appointed Ian Lowe as the sole panelist in this matter on October 25, 2016. 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
The Complainant is a sports-fashion and outdoor brands retail company based in Manchester, UK. It was founded in 1981 and originally traded as "John David Sports" before becoming known as "JD Sports". It has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since October 1996. The Complainant now has over 900 stores across Europe and Malaysia, offering for sale own brand labels as well as brands such as Nike, Adidas and The North Face. The Complainant operates e-commerce websites at "www.jdsports.co.uk" and under a number of other country-code Top-Level Domains.
The Complainant is the proprietor of numerous trademark registrations for JD SPORTS in jurisdictions across the world including European Union trademark number 8182611 JD SPORTS which was filed on March 26, 2009 and registered on December 13, 2011.
The Domain Name was registered on July 25, 2016, and resolves to a website substantially a copy of the Complainant's website. The homepage features a banner identical to that of the Complainant including the Complainant's tagline "JD UNDISPUTED KING OF TRAINERS". The website offers for sale a range of products substantially the same as those sold from the Complainant's websites, including the same brands.
The postcode of the Respondent in the WhoIs record of the Domain Name does not correspond to a valid UK postcode.
5. Parties' Contentions
The Complainant contends that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to its JD SPORTS trademarks, that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name and that the Respondent registered and is using the Domain Name in bad faith within the meaning of paragraph 4(b)(iv) of the Policy.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant's contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
According to paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, for this Complaint to succeed in relation to the Domain Name the Complainant must prove that:
(i) the Domain Name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; and
(ii) the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name; and
(iii) the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant has uncontested rights in the trademark JD SPORTS, both by virtue of its many trademark registrations around the world and as a result of its goodwill and reputation acquired through use of the JD SPORTS mark over many years. Ignoring the generic Top-Level Domain ("gTLD") ".com", the Domain Name comprises the entirety of the Complainant's mark together with the word "shop". In the Panel's view, the addition of the generic word "shop" does not detract from the distinctiveness of the JD SPORTS mark. On the contrary, it is likely to add to the confusing similarity since the Complainant's primary business is retail shops. Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to a mark in which the Complainant has rights.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant has made out a strong prima facie case that the Respondent could have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name. In the Panel's view, the use of a domain name, incorporating the name of a well-known retailer of sports-fashion and outdoor products, for a website selling identical products, without the authority of the trademark owner, does not give rise to rights or legitimate interests in the domain name. The Respondent has chosen not to respond to the Complaint and has accordingly failed to counter the prima facie case established by the Complainant. In the circumstances, the Panel finds that the Respondent does not have any rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
In light of the nature of the Domain Name, comprising as it does the widely-known trademark of the Complainant, and the use to which the Respondent has put the Domain Name, the Panel is in no doubt that the Respondent must have had the Complainant and its rights in the JD SPORTS mark in mind when it registered the Domain Name. The Respondent has also given false contact details. The Panel considers that the Respondent's use of the Complainant's mark in the Domain Name for a website selling products identical or substantially similar to the products sold from the Complainant's websites amounts to paradigm bad faith registration and use for the purposes of paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the Domain Name <jdsportsshop.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: November 8, 2016