Business China

How to Protect Your Brand in China

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Intellectual property needs to be treated with as much importance as other business assets. This intangible asset can be financially exploited if it’s not safeguarded, so you need to take the right measures to protect it, or else someone else may end up selling or illegally licensing it.

If you’re thinking of moving your brand to China, here’s all you need to know about protecting its integrity:

Educate your employees

Unfortunately, not many Chinese people are aware of the consequences of brand infringement. So you need to make sure your workforce recognizes your brand as a business asset that needs to be protected.

Other than that, make sure you’re mitigating any potential risks through vigilance. You need to employ a brand monitoring team, both internally and externally. This is to make sure that there are no cybersquatters inside or outside the business.

Monitoring, however, comes with a huge bill. If you’re a small business, monitoring your brand comprehensively once a month will do the job.

On the other hand, large businesses may need to outsource the task and hand it over to a third party service. They will make sure that no unauthorized brand usage is taking place on the internet and that your employees are complying with the instructions being given to them.

Register your trademarks in both English and Chinese

Most of the Chinese population can only speak and write in Chinese. This might make it difficult for them to recognize a symbol that’s not in Chinese. This can make litigation proceedings hard for you, and will also make it hard for you to establish your differentiation.

In cases like these, we recommend seeking legal advice. Your company registration service could also help you get your foreign wordmark converted into Chinese. This could either happen through a phonetic method, transliteration, or a conceptual method that focuses on the inherent meaning of the word.

Just make sure you conduct extensive research to see what trademarks exist. This will help you ensure that yours is not too generic or unacceptable.

How to Protect Your Brand in China 1

Territorial registration

Just like many other places in the world, trademarks in China are territorial. This means that you need a separate registration for every jurisdiction. A trademark approved specifically for Hong Kong will not necessarily be applicable to Taiwan or Hubei.

Registered trademarks serve as evidence for you to prove that a third party is infringing your brand. If such a legal issue arises, the customs officials will carefully examine the trademark before seizing the goods before they leave the Chinese port.

We also recommend registering your trademark early. This is because the trademark registration process works on a first to file basis. This is why you need to get your trademark registered before the business even enters China.

Other than helping your register your company, Business China also provides Chinese trademark services for foreign entrepreneurs. Whether you’re looking to set up a joint venture, WFOE, or representative office, we will help you deal with the IP laws.

Get in touch by calling +86-020-2917 9715 or just email to, we will respond in a minute. 
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