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WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Reviglass, S.A. v. Betebe Mosaic and Ceramics Ind. Inc
Case No. D2001-0560
1. The Parties
The Complainant in this administrative proceeding is REVIGLASS S.A., Bo Elbarrena, 20496 Bidegoian (Guipuzcoa), Spain.
The Respondent is Betebe Mosaic and Ceramics Ind. Inc., Davutpasa Cad. Cebealibey Sok. No. 20, Topkapi, Istanbul, Turkey.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The domain name in dispute is <reviglass.com>.
The Registrar with which the domain name is registered is NETWORK SOLUTIONS, INC.
3. Procedural History
The WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center ("the Center") received the Complaint on April 18, 2001, by e-mail and on April 26, 2001, in hardcopy. The Center had acknowledged receipt thereof on April 19, 2001.
On April 23, 2001, the Center sent the corresponding Request for Registrar Verification in connection with this case to Network Solutions. On April 24, 2001, the Registrar’s verification response confirmed that the Registrant was Betebe Mosaic and Ceramics Ind. Inc. and that the domain name <reviglass.com> was in "active" status.
On May 2, 2001, after having verified whether the Complaint was satisfying the formal requirements, the Center notified by e-mail and courier the Commencement of Administrative Proceeding to the Parties, in accordance with Paragraph 4 of the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("the Rules").
On May 21, 2001, the Center issued by e-mail the Notification of Default to the Respondent for having failed to submit a response to the Complaint within the deadline granted.
On May 30, 2001, the Center proceeded with the appointment of the Administrative Panel pursuant to Paragraph 6 of the Rules and advised the Parties of the appointment of the undersigned as sole panelist in accordance with Paragraph 6(f) of said Rules, after the latter had signed and forwarded to the Center on May 29, 2001, a statement of acceptance and declared his impartiality and independence in this matter.
Transmission of the file to the Sole Panelist was made on May 30, 2001, by e-mail and registered post, hard copy of which was received by the undersigned a few days later.
The Sole Panelist forwarded his decision to the Center within the time limit fixed.
4. Factual Background
The Complaint is based on the marks and company name registered by Reviglass S.A. for goods and/or services (classes 19 and 35): Glass for building, especially tiles of glass; sole agency, import and export services, especially of tiles and glass for building (Complainant’s Annexes 4 to 6).
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant submits the following :
(i) the domain name <reviglass.com> is identical or confusingly similar to the marks and company name registered by the Complainant;
(ii) the Respondent should be considered as having no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name that is the subject of the Complaint; and
(iii) the domain name should be considered as having been registered and used in bad faith, because :
- the domain name was registered in order to prevent the Complainant from reflecting the mark in a corresponding domain name; Reviglass S.A. has used the "REVIGLASS" mark throughout the world for more than fifteen years, attending to many national and international exhibitions (Paris, Bologna, Singapore, Beirut, Dallas, San Francisco...);
- the domain name was registered and is being used primarily for the purpose of disrupting the business of a competitor, considering that both Complainant and Respondent are glass mosaic producers, and thus, direct competitors;
- Reviglass S.A. is selling its glass mosaic under the "REVIGLASS" mark in the Turkish market for more than eight years, and therefore the Complainant considers that the REVIGLASS mark was well known by the Respondent when registering the <reviglass.com> domain name.
The Respondent has not submitted any response to the Complaint.
6. Discussion and Findings
Paragraph 4(a) of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("the Policy") sets forth three requirements, which have to be met for the Administrative Panel to order the transfer of the disputed domain name to the Complainant. Those requirements are that:
(i) Respondent’s domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; and
(ii) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and
(iii) Respondent’s domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
The Complainant must prove in the administrative proceeding that each of the aforesaid three elements is present so as to warrant relief, according to Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy.
The Administrative Panel has to decide the Complaint on the basis of the statements and documents submitted and in accordance with the Policy, the Rules and any rules and principles of law that it deems applicable, pursuant to Paragraph 15(a) of said Rules.
A. Identity or Confusing Similarity
There is no doubt that there is identity between the Complainant’s trade and service marks "REVIGLASS" and the domain name <reviglass.com>.
The Complainant has also established its rights in trade and service marks "REVIGLASS" with various registrations for such a name (see Complainant’s Annexes 4 to 6).
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests of the Respondent
The Respondent, in not responding to the Complaint, has failed to invoke any of the circumstances, which could demonstrate, pursuant to Paragraph 4 (c) of the Policy, any rights to and/or legitimate interests in the domain name in dispute. This entitles the Administrative Panel to draw any such inferences from such default as it considers appropriate pursuant to Paragraph 14 (b) of the Rules (see e.g. WIPO Cases Nos. D2000-0009, p. 6 or D2000-0867, p. 6).
It is the Sole Panelist’s finding that the Complainant has established that the trade and service mark "REVIGLASS" has been known in Europe for a significant period of time. Furthermore, absent evidence to the contrary, the Complainant has not granted any license or otherwise permitted the Respondent to use such trade and service marks or to apply for any domain name incorporating the said trade and service marks.
Under those particular circumstances, the Sole Panelist is unable to find any evidence that would tend to establish that the Respondent has rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name at stake.
C. Registration and Use in Bad Faith
Paragraph 4(b) of the Policy provides a non-exclusive list of circumstances that evidence registration and use of a domain name in bad faith. Any one of the following behaviors is sufficient to support a finding of bad faith:
(i) circumstances indicating that you have registered or you have acquired the domain name primarily for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the domain name registration to the complainant who is the owner of the trademark or service mark or to a competitor of that complainant, for valuable consideration in excess of your documented out-of-pocket costs directly related to the domain name; or
(ii) you have registered the domain name in order to prevent the owner of the trademark or service mark from reflecting the mark in a corresponding domain name, provided that you have engaged in a pattern of such conduct; or
(iii) you have registered the domain name primarily for the purpose of disrupting the business of a competitor; or
(iv) by using the domain name, you have intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to your web site or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the complainant’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of your web site or location or of a product or service on your web site or location.
As already pointed out, the Respondent did not file any response to the Complaint, failing thereby to invoke any circumstance, which could demonstrate his good faith in the registration or use of the domain name in issue.
In addition, the Respondent has not disputed the Complainant’s contentions mentioned above that it has registered and is using the <reviglass.com> domain name (i) in order to prevent the Complainant from reflecting the mark in a corresponding domain name and (ii) for disrupting the business of a competitor, considering that both Complainant and Respondent are glass mosaic producers. Absent evidence to the contrary, it is the Sole Panelist’s finding that the Complainant can successfully rely on Paragraph 4 (b) (ii) and (iii) of the Policy.
In light of the foregoing, the Sole Panelist decides that the domain name registered by the Respondent is identical to the corresponding trademarks of the Complainant, that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name and that the domain name in issue has been registered and is being used in bad faith by the Respondent.
Accordingly, pursuant to Paragraph 4 (i) of the Rules, the Sole Panelist requires that the registration of the domain name <reviglass.com> shall be transferred to the Complainant.
Dated: June 12, 2001