Swinburne University of Technology and the University of Melbourne are working
together to create a single, internationally linked trade mark database called
This database is a world-first platform that links trade
mark application numbers across countries, which shows how trade marks are used
in different markets, opening up new opportunities for global research in brand
behaviour, trends, and patterns.
Currently, TMlink includes trade mark data from Australia,
Canada, the European Union, New Zealand and the United States. In future the
database will expand to incorporate trade mark data from other major economies
around the world, including the United Kingdom, Germany, France, China, Japan
and South Korea.
Country specific trade mark databases make it expensive, if
not unviable, for analysing global aspects of branding and trade mark policy
issues. However, TMlink takes the burden away from business and links national
trade mark data registers on the basis of company names, trade mark text, and
sector classification numbers to form a comprehensive global database that will
facilitate market research.
Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, the
Hon Craig Laundy MP commented on the new tool.
“The aim of the project is to provide insights into the
foreign trade interests of Australian businesses. By knowing what is already
registered in each jurisdiction, companies will be able to make evidence based
decisions on if they should enter and if they should register IP in that
market. This central database will continue to grow and we hope to include
every country that the World Intellectual Property Organization works with,”
said the Hon Craig Laundy MP.
For a comparison, IP Australia contributed 1.4 million trade marks to the
database, covering the period 1906-2015, while the United States register
included 7.4 million trade marks filed between 1884 to 2015.