WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Oportun, Inc., aka Progreso Financiero v. Whois Privacy Corp.
Case No. D2017-0608
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Oportun, Inc., aka Progreso Financiero of Redwood City, California, United States of America ("United States"), represented by Potomac Law Group, PLLC, United States.
The Respondent is Whois Privacy Corp. of Nassau, New Providence, the Bahamas.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name, <oportuncashloans.com> (the "Domain Name"), is registered with Internet Domain Service BS Corp (the "Registrar").
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the "Center") on March 25, 2017. On March 27, 2017, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Name. On March 28, 2017, 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 April 25, 2017. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was May 15, 2017. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent's default on May 16, 2017.
The Center appointed Tony Willoughby as the sole panelist in this matter on May 23, 2017. 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 financial services company incorporated in Delaware, United States in 2005 under the name Progreso Financiero and based in California, United States. It specializes in the provision of loans and debit card services to people with little or no credit history. The Complainant changed its name to Oportun, Inc. in January 2015.
The Complainant is the registered proprietor of inter alia United States trade mark registration no. 4999048 OPORTUN registered July 12, 2016 (filed November 6, 2014) in class 36 for "financial services, namely, providing personal loans and lines of credit; debit card services."
The unchallenged evidence of the Complainant is that it has operated a substantial business under the "Oportun" name since January 2015 and that it has continuously owned and operated an Internet website under the domain name <oportun.com>, and utilizes that domain name for company email addresses through which it communicates internally, with customers, vendors, and the public in general.
The Domain Name was registered on January 24, 2017, and is connected to a website offering "Oportun Cash Loans". The website indicates that the site is owned and operated by "Oportun Cash Loans" with an email contact address of "[ ]@oportuncashloans.com".
On March 7, 2017, the Complainant's representatives sent an email to the Respondent addressed to the Respondent at "[ ]@oportuncashloans.com". The email drew to the Respondent's attention the Complainant's trade mark rights, objected to the use that the Respondent is making of the mark OPORTUN and demanded that that use cease. The email bounced back. The Complainant reported to the Registrar that the Respondent's email address listed on its website was inactive and requested accurate contact details for the Respondent. On the unchallenged evidence of the Complainant the Registrar refused to provide current and accurate contact details for the Respondent and instead simply directed the Complainant to the "Registrant" contact details listed in the Whois record, which are the contact details for the Registrar's own domain name privacy service. On March 10, 2017, the Complainant's representatives sent an email to the Respondent at "[ ]@customers.whoisprivacycorp.com", being the email address for the Respondent in the Registrar's Whois database. The email was in similar terms to those of the March 7, 2017 email. The Complainant's representatives received no reply.
5. Parties' Contentions
The Complainant contends that the Domain Name is identical or confusingly similar to its OPORTUN registered trade mark, that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name and that the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
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 trade mark 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 in bad faith and is being used in bad faith.
B. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Domain Name features within it the Complainant's OPORTUN trade mark in its entirety. As such the Domain Name is identical or confusingly similar to a trade mark in which the Complainant has rights. See paragraph 1.7 of the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition ("WIPO Jurisprudential Overview 3.0"), which states:
"While each case is judged on its own merits, in cases where a domain name incorporates the entirety of a trademark, or where at least a dominant feature of the relevant mark is recognizable in the domain name, the domain name will normally be considered confusingly similar to that mark for purposes of UDRP standing."
C. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Domain Name appears to be being used to offer under the name "Oportun Cash Loans" online services very similar to those offered by the Complainant under its OPORTUN trade mark.
The Complainant has established to the satisfaction of the Panel a prima facie case that the Respondent adopted the Domain Name with knowledge of the Complainant's business under the OPORTUN trade mark and with a view to syphoning off for its own benefit business intended for the Complainant.
Thus the Respondent has a case to answer. But there is no answer. The Respondent has not responded. The Panel has reviewed the circumstances set out in paragraph 4(c) of the Policy, which, if established, would have provided a satisfactory answer to the Complaint, but on the evidence before the Panel none of them is applicable here. The Panel concludes that the Respondent failed to respond, because it had no answer to the Complainant's contentions.
The Panel finds that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name.
D. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
On the same basis, the Panel finds that the Respondent registered the Domain Name with a view to impersonating the Complainant for commercial gain and has been using it for that purpose.
The Panel finds that the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith within the meaning of paragraph 4(b)(iv) 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, <oportuncashloans.com>, be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: May 27, 2017