WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Accenture Global Services Limited v. Milano Mariah
Case No. D2019-1067
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Accenture Global Services Limited, Ireland, represented by McDermott Will & Emery LLP, United States of America.
The Respondent is Milano Mariah, United Kingdom.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <accenturegroups.com> is registered with Hostinger, UAB (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on May 9, 2019. On May 10, 2019, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On May 13, 2019, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the disputed domain name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on May 13, 2019 providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amended Complaint on May 14, 2019. In response to a notification by the Center that the Complaint was administratively deficient, the Complainant filed a second amendment to the Complaint on May 17, 2019.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amended Complaints 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 May 21, 2019. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was June 10, 2019. The Respondent did not submit a formal response. Accordingly, the Center notified the commencement of the Panel appointment process on June 11, 2019.
The Center appointed Andrea Mondini as the sole panelist in this matter on June 14, 2019. 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 an international business that provides management consulting, technology services and outsourcing services under the company name and trademark ACCENTURE and has offices and operations in more than 200 cities in 56 countries.
The Complainant owns numerous registrations for the trademark ACCENTURE, including US registration no. 3,091,811 registered on May 16, 2006, which is registered in numerous classes.
The disputed domain name was registered on March 14, 2019, and resolves to a blank website.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant in essence contends the following:
The ACCENTURE mark is a leading global brand. The Complainant is the owner of more than 1,000 trademark registrations for the ACCENTURE mark and ACCENTURE & Design mark in more than 140 countries. The ACCENTURE marks have become distinctive and famous globally long prior to the date on which the Respondent registered the disputed domain name.
The disputed domain name incorporates the “ACCENTURE” mark in its entirety. The addition of the descriptive term “groups” does not dispel confusion.
The Complainant has not licensed or otherwise authorized the Respondent to use the ACCENTURE trademark. The Respondent therefore has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name, or any rights in the ACCENTURE trademarks, or association with the Complainant whatsoever.
The disputed domain name has been registered in bad faith because, given the Complainant’s worldwide reputation, the Respondent was or should have been aware of the ACCENTURE marks prior to registering the disputed domain name.
When the Complainant became aware of the Respondent’s registration of the disputed domain name on April 2, 2019, the Complainant send an email message to the email listed in the WHOIS information requesting a reply. However, the Respondent has not replied to the Complainant’s inquiry.
The Respondent used the disputed domain name in bad faith by passively holding it without a legitimate purpose. A further indication of passive holding in bad faith is that the disputed domain name WHOIS information is redacted and the identity of the real owner is concealed.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
According to paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, in order to succeed, a complainant must establish each of the following elements:
(i) The disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights;
(ii) The respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name; and
(iii) The disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant has shown that it holds numerous registrations for the trademark ACCENTURE, including US registration No. 3,091,811 registered on May 16, 2006.
The Panel finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to the Complainant’ trademark, because it incorporates in its entirety the trademark ACCENTURE. The addition of the descriptive word “groups” does not dispel confusing similarity between the disputed domain name and the Complainant’s trademark. See section 1.8 of WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”).
Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied the requirement under paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant contends, credibly, that it has not authorized the Respondent to register or use the Complainant’s trademark ACCENTURE in disputed domain name, and that there is no relationship whatsoever between the Parties. In the absence of any Response, the Panel concludes that the Respondent was not authorized or licensed to use the Complainant’s trademark in the disputed domain name and that there is no indication of any legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name. Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Respondent does not have rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
Therefore, the Panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied the requirement under paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The Complainant has demonstrated that the ACCENTURE mark is distinctive and well-known throughout the world. The Panel thus concludes that the Respondent must have been aware of this trademark and its reputation when it registered the disputed domain name, so that the disputed domain name was registered in bad faith (see Accenture Global Services Limited v. Domains By Proxy LLC/ Norman Shaaban, WIPO Case No. D2018-0731, <accenturemedia.com>).
Considering (i) the high degree of distinctiveness and worldwide reputation of the Complainant’s trademark ACCENTURE, (ii) the failure of the Respondent to reply to the Complainant’s inquiry, (iii) the Respondent’s concealing of its identity by providing redacted WHOIS information and (iv) the inactive holding of the disputed domain name without a legitimate purpose, the Panel concludes that the disputed domain name has been registered and used in bad faith.
The Panel therefore finds that the Complainant has satisfied the requirement under 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 disputed domain name <accenturegroups.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: June 18, 2019