Francis Gurry led WIPO as Director General from October 1, 2008 to September 30, 2020.

Market Research Report on Indian Use of the Madrid System

July 12, 2016

Together with WIPO, India’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, recently published a report on the use of the Madrid System in India PDF,  report on the use of the Madrid System for the international registration of marks in India.

The report was prepared by a research team from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore and released in New Delhi by WIPO Director General Francis Gurry, and Ramesh Abhishek, Secretary of DIPP, on March 31, 2016. It provides valuable insights into how Indian users go about seeking trademark protection abroad.

Market insights

India joined the Madrid System in 2013. Its booming economy and increasing number of global brands are strong drivers for the country to become one of the top users of the Madrid System over the coming years.  Increased use of the System could help to facilitate international trade and provide economic benefits for Indian enterprises.

Recognizing the potential importance of the Madrid System to Indian businesses, this market research project was carried out to deepen understanding of the Indian trademarks market.  The research entailed exploring:

  • awareness and knowledge of the Madrid System in India,
  • key factors that influence international trademark protection decision-making behavior, and
  • communication channels for engagement and promotion.

Key findings

Madrid System Use and Awareness – Over one-third of surveyed companies had applied for trademarks internationally, but less than a quarter had made use of the Madrid route.  The findings show that more than two thirds of the sampled companies have awareness of the Madrid System, but this appears superficial, with some misperceptions on the process and procedures associated with the System. 

Decision making on international registrations – The decision tends to be made at operational level in half of companies surveyed, while initial national trademark registration decisions are predominantly taken by top management.  This could mean that the international registration of marks under the Madrid System is a lower priority for most companies or seen as a subsequent procedural action for managing trademark rights.

Reasons for not using the Madrid System – The majority of respondents attributed non-awareness of procedure, costs, and a lack of interest in overseas operations as the main reasons for their indifference to the System. An information asymmetry problem seems to exist for Indian companies in relation to the benefits of trademarks in general and the Madrid System in particular.

Next steps

Knowing the market and our users better will assist in the design and implementation of national initiatives to encourage greater use of the Madrid System by Indian applicants and their representatives.  

More about the Madrid System in India

Background – The Madrid System

The Madrid System makes it possible for an applicant to apply for a trademark in a large number of countries by filing a single international application at a national or regional IP office of a country/region that is party to the System.  It eases the process of multinational trademark registration by reducing the requirement to file an application at the IP office in each country in which protection is sought.  The System also simplifies the subsequent management of the mark, since it is possible to record further changes or to renew the registration through a single procedural step.

For data updates and additional analysis on the performance of the Madrid System in 2015, consult the Madrid Yearly Review: International Registration of Marks, which will be published on WIPO’s Intellectual Property Statistics webpages in the third quarter of 2016.