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Entrepreneur’s trademark headache

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Finlay’s venture caught the eye of a German shoe-making outfit called Fin Comfort. “They make orthopaedic shoes,” she explains. “After a huge amount of to-ing and fro-ing, I came to an agreement where they will let me make my shoes but I won’t market them as being comfort shoes. However, of course, I am allowed to make my shoes comfortable. It just went on and on.”

Finlay didn’t realise how major trademark issues were when she embarked on her entrepreneurial journey a year ago. “Before you’ve paid any graphic designer to design logos or a website, make sure you can trade under that name,” she advises. “Your business is otherwise in jeopardy. “ Fortunately for Finlay, her problem was sorted out thanks to her “fantastic lawyer”, and she’s now on track to record turnover of £250,000 following her first year of operation. However, Finlay notes: “It was an expense I hadn’t anticipated and wasn’t ready for. And it caused a huge amount of aggravation. I’ve met a couple of people who have got to the launch stage and they’ve had to pack up and start again because they haven’t been able to resolve the trademark issues.”

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