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Dawn Ellmore Employment reviews the shock defeat for McDonald’s as it’s stripped of its ‘Big Mac’ EU trade mark

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For more than half a century McDonald’s has been a recognisable brand in just about every country you can think of. According to its website, the chain has restaurants in 101 countries. Its 36,000+ restaurants serve around 69 million fast food fans every single day.

With stats like this, and McDonald’s easily recognised by just about anybody, the recent EU trade mark ruling has surprised many. McDonald’s has just lost its EU trade mark for the Big Mac in what is dubbed a ‘David and Goliath’ battle with a small Irish chain.

How did McDonald’s lose its Big Mac EU trade mark?

When Supermac’s took on the might of McDonald’s in a trade mark battle, it was assumed by many that the smaller chain would lose. While Supermac’s may not be a household name in the UK, however, it’s much loved in Ireland.

Now the largest fast food chain in Ireland, Supermac’s began in 1978 and today has more than 110 franchises and restaurants all over the country. Founded by Pat and Una McDonagh, it was named after his nickname, ‘Supermac’ when he played Gaelic football. They also own Claddagh Irish Pubs & Restaurants through Supermac’s Ireland Ltd.

The EU trade mark battle

Supermac’s has been locked into an ongoing fight with McDonald’s since 2015, when it announced plans to expand into the EU and UK. McDonald’s initially objected to Supermac’s registering a number of trade marks for products and its name. They argued that the names McDonald’s and Supermac’s are too similar and would cause customer confusion. McDonald’s further argued that the Supermac’s brand name is visually too similar to their trade mark.

Supermac’s responded by pointing out that they had happily traded at the same time as McDonald’s in Ireland for more than 30 years with no signs of confusion on the part of customers.

Initially, McDonald’s won a part-victory when the European Union’s Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM) decided that Supermac can continue to trade in its own name within the EU. However, it rejected the Irish company’s trade mark applications for various products and menu items, saying that consumers might “be confused as to whether Supermac’s is a new version of McDonald’s”, given that there are near-identical products sold by both restaurant chains.

Revoking McDonald’s EU trade marks

In January 2019, the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) made a decision that allows victory to Supermac’s after all. By ruling that EU trade marks owned by McDonald’s are to be revoked, Supermac’s is clear to expand into the rest of the EU.

The landmark decision went into effect immediately, on the basis that the EUIPO rules that McDonald’s had failed to prove “genuine use” of its Big Mac trade mark as a restaurant or menu item.

Unsurprisingly delighted, Pat McDonagh says: “Never mind David versus Goliath, this unique landmark decision is akin to the Connacht team winning against the All Blacks. This is the end of the McBully. Just because McDonald’s has deep pockets and we are relatively small in context, doesn’t mean we weren’t going to fight our corner.”

How the fight played out

In April 2017, Supermac’s requested that the EUIPO cancel McDonald’s trade mark for ‘Big Mac’ and ‘Mc’. The chain also accused the US giant of “trade mark bullying” by registering and gaining protection for names, but not actually using them to stamp down any potential competition.

On its part, McDonald’s legal representatives provided signed affidavits from high level executives and showed examples of packaging and adverts to demonstrate it serves Big Macs right across the EU, and therefore deserves to retain the EU trade mark for that specific product.

However, the EUIPO deemed this “insufficient” in its judgement. As trade marks are registered at national level and at the EU, McDonald’s does not lose all of its protection for the Big Mac. They also have the right to appeal, which we suspect they are likely to do.

Supermac’s forges ahead

For Supermac’s, all eyes are on the future. Mr McDonagh says: “This now opens the door for the decision to be made by the European trade mark office to allow us to use our SuperMac as a burger across Europe.”

A representative from EIP, an intellectual property law firm, Carissa-Kendall Windless, says: “This decision is a significant one, partly because it serves as a warning to multinational companies that they can no longer simply file trade mark applications without a genuine intention to use it”.

It’s inevitable that McDonald’s will exercise its right to appeal, and it will be interesting to see how this David and Goliath battle goes on this year.

About Dawn Ellmore Employment

Dawn Ellmore Employment was incorporated in 1995 and is a market leader in intellectual property and legal recruitment.

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Why hair transplant is so demanded in Turkey

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Men face every day the aesthetic canons that society imposes. It is no longer only women who suffer the consequences of maintaining an attractive and young image, but nowadays the male sector is also affected. In the case of men, alopecia is one of the biggest concerns, because a beautiful, strong and healthy hair is symbol of beauty and youth.

Men, after trying several homemade methods or miraculous solutions, see how their baldness increases in the same proportion as their self-esteem decreases. The worst of all is that alopecia is something inevitable, but the good thing is that there are medical advanced treatments that really provides good and natural results.

Capillary grafts are no longer a taboo and Turkey is the European epicentre for this type of treatments, becoming the mecca of health tourism, especially related to provide modern and effective solutions against alopecia.

The most advanced hair treatments in Turkey

Turkey has many expert clinics in this field, such as Capilclinic, that make possible this international acknowledgment of hair treatments in this country. This popularity is due to their ability to apply the latest technology and the most modern methods in the solutions offered to their patients.

The most demanded treatment to solve the alopecia problem is the hair transplant in Turkey,  that ensures natural results and the patient does not have to worry about anything, since they often offer packages where all expenses are included: treatment, hotel, private transport…  It is also remarkable that this country is becoming so popular as a medical destiny because of its really competitive prices if we compare them with the same procedures carried out in other European countries. In addition, these packages we’re talking about offer many more advantages than the treatments in other countries for much less money.

Therefore, personal attention and professional and economic reasons are the main motives that make thousands of people travel to Turkey to undergo medical treatments.

How to know if a capillary graft is well done

The main objective that we want to achieve with a capillary graft is naturalness. In this sense, we can say that the treatment has been a success when nobody notices it. The experience of the professionals of the medical team that carries out the treatment is the key element that guarantees the natural results. Each graft must be made according to the angle and direction of the hair of the area of ​​the head in which it is located.

In addition, other aspects have to be taken into account to achieve that naturalness. For example, considering the age of the patient is essential, since it would be very artificial for a 60-year-old man to have a very low frontal line, more appropriate for adolescents.

The decision about what kind of hair transplant choose and which will be the most effective should be taken with the precise advice of the professionals, after evaluating each particular case and the patient’s own expectations.

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BI Tecnology leading the way in provision of industrial machinery

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The Italian company BI Tecnology has merged with I.mec in order to provide a better service to its clients and make it much easier for them to access products and services easily without losing any of the years and years of expertise gained in the industry.

They specialise in main products that have applications across many industries from food and pharmaceuticals to ceramics and waste disposal and recycling. They are experts across machinery for all these sectors and the provision of machinery it assist with the production of quality materials and ingredients.

Industry experts Bitecnology.com are able to give advice and guidance on all aspects of iron removal systems, vibrating sieves and mixing tanks, no matter which sector requires the equipment, and they carry all the right quality assurances and certifications so you can be safe in the knowledge that you are working with a quality piece of equipment.

Putting the customer first and adapting to their needs

Bitecnology have a whole team of experts who can not only ensure that the right equipment is purchased that meets the client’s need, but they can also consult on how to adapt the wide range of equipment to meet specialised criteria dependent on the needs of the client.

The priority is customer service and experience and decent post-sale support, to ensure the use of the equipment is running smoothly and as expected. BI tecnology and I.mec consider themselves as a partner you can rely on for all your screening, filtering and iron removal.

Separation of dry materials and mixtures

Bitecnology are specialists in vibrating sieves which are used to separate mixtures and in the production of heterogeneous solids. The size of the orifices in the sieve vary, making one vibrating sieve more appropriate for certain tasks than another.

Often they are used in the food industry and food production lines, but also in other industries like waste separation, or removing chunks of marble from sand, or removing impurities from salt for example. The machines are ideal for use across a range of industries, not just food production but also pharmaceutical, ceramic, cosmetics and construction industries.

In instances where it is better to add water to a dry mix, there are also machines available for this. It allows sieving down to the finest particles available through a fine mechanical sieve made from steel or nylon mixed with bronze. This is known as wet screening.

Quality is assured through independent certification

In order to guarantee a quality product, and to build trust that high standards will always be maintained, BI Tecnology  have been sure to not only obtain those certifications that are required under EU regulations, but also additional certifications to show how well produced each product is.

Every machine produced is subjected to thorough systematic testing. It means you can be sure that the service is reliable and safe, and is important for quality standards. And this is in addition to the  Ex Atex and TUV InterCert SAAR Certificates the company holds.

This is how you know it is a company you can trust and rely on, but also it is vital in your own manufacturing or production line that the safety of your own workforce is catered for, and that using these machines also ensure a quality outcome for you too.

A wide range of products are available

It is not just the vibrating sieve that is available, there are a wide range of products to suit your needs, including:

Vibrating sieves

Mechanical canvases for vibrating sieves

Iron removers

Mixers

Pumps

Dissolving Units

Mill discharge Units

They are happy to go through a consultation to discuss the best option, simply complete a form online or give them a call for a specialist, competitive quote.

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How to plan the best Ibiza party

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Ibiza is the party capital of the world. In the beautiful Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean sea, the island vibes and gorgeous weather has hundreds of thousands of visitors flocking to the island every year ready to relax, unwind and in many cases party hard.

VIP night in London Barcelone MArbella ibiza

This is why Ibiza is a fantastic place to host the event to end all events, but with so many parties to choose from on the island, how do you get people to yours? Here are some hints and tips to get you started when planning your first Ibiza event.

First things first – set a budget

Amazing parties do not just happen. They need time, a lot of effort and planning, and be prepared to invest a little money in the party.

It is important not to underestimate the budget you will need. Do your research in relation to how much everything will cost, from licences if you need them, staff to run security and provide drinks and food, a DJ, rental of important equipment and the hire of the venue itself.

It can soon add up. You should also allocate some funds towards marketing the event if you want people to book a ticket or simply turn up. Whether you are printing publicity material, or promoting via social media and online, it will cost money.

Choose a venue that will blow people away

For any Ibiza party planner the first thing you have to do is choose a venue, and the more spectacular or unusual the better. You want your guest to walk in an say wow, and be talking about it with all their friends for years afterwards.

When choosing a venue you need to consider the logistics first. First consider how many attendees you are expecting. If it is a more intimate gathering of around 20 to 50 people, then there are many gorgeous villas to choose from.

Or you might want something a little more grand if you are expecting several hundred like a beach party. Talk to the various venues available to hire. Make sure that they are open to your hosting a party at their location, and be conscious of local laws and the neighbours especially of you want to have live or amplified music at the party and the intention is to keep it going long into the night. Or even until the sunrises – this is Ibiza after all, the party capital of the world.

Also consider location in terms of accessibility. Is it easy to get to and find? How will people get home at the end of the night? Much of Ibiza is spread across the island so if taxis are involved you might need to let some of the taxi companies know that you will need a lot of taxis on the night you choose. Also consider other elements of the party. For example you can’t host a pool party without a pool, and if you are serving food, what facilities are there for preparing it.  

Get the sound and lighting right

Lighting can make a huge difference to the atmosphere of a party, particularly at night and especially if you are intending to have professional filming if you want to create promotional videos for future parties.

Think about the atmosphere you want to create, is it something subtle, or a lighting spectacular? The most simple space can be utterly transformed by lighting and this is no area to cut costs, it is likely you will need lighting equipment hire Ibiza, as buying it yourself really will blow the budget.

Are you thinking of pyrotechnics, LED displays, lasers or dry ice. Then the best option is to hire what you need for the event. A good hire company will also be able to provide all the rigging you will need too, delivered, installed and dismantled by professionals.

The second major piece of electronics that you have to get right is the sound system, especially for a music event. Consider sound system hire Ibiza for everything from PA systems to advanced mixing desks for live events and concerts.

Looking after your guests with the best service

You’ve gone to all the trouble of setting up the most amazing venue, the entertain is going to be fantastic, the marketing has got people to turn up – the last thing you want is for the event not to meet expectations.

You need to have a plan for how you will look after your guests after they arrive.

One of the most important aspects, especially for large crowds is the toilets. You do not want half your guests in a queue for the toilet all night. You also do not want those toilets to immediately become disgusting because you haven’t got enough for the number of people. So make sure you have that covered.

You also need to work out the bar, any VIP area and catering options if you are providing them. You want your guests to feel comfortable at all times, and not leaving because they are hungry or thirsty.

Finally, the most important aspect – the people. When you hire staff for the night, as security, runners, bar staff, cleaners, remember that they will be representing you and they need to have a positive attitude when it comes to looking after your guests. This can make all the difference between a smooth running amazing event, and one that very quickly turns into chaos.

It can sometimes feel a bit daunting when planning your first event, especially if you have never done it before. There are a lot of moving parts, and your organisational skills need to be incredible to avoid the pitfalls of a failed event. But don’t let that put you off. It might even be worth calling in a professional Ibiza event agency, so that you can have a little peace of mind in the planning and also rely on their expertise in event planning and the local area. You can then concentrate more on having a good time and enjoying the show rather than run yourself ragged on the night.

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