What’s in a name?, said William Shakespeare. But now a company name has created a lot of concern among all of us. It began when Google recently underwent a great reorganization in their structure and then emerged as the parent company named Alphabet. We have already decoded Alphabet and the philosophy behind Larry’s decision in another article. Larry Page, one of the co-founders of Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and the CEO of Alphabet, believes that this allows more management scale, as he and Sergey Brin, President of Alphabet, can run things independently that aren’t very related to the core business of Google. However, one of the core reasons behind setting up a new holding company Alphabet is prospering the business through strong leaders and independence.
Alphabet, the name has become the reason for enormous speculations – is it Alphabet.com owned by Luxury car manufacturer BMW or Alphabet City Brewing Company? Of course, many of you know various companies holding the same name. Therefore, it is quite skeptical that why did Larry and his team not searched this term before. According to Business Insider, the news wasn’t surprising because Google has been considering the move for the last four years. It also says that the details are a little bit different, but the idea is the same.
Had Google searched on their selection of name they might have discovered that Alphabet.com and the trademark Alphabet itself are being owned by BMW. But the matter is not limited only to Google and BMW, Reuters reports that more than 103 trademark registrations in the United States that include the word “Alphabet” or a close variation of it. The trademark registrations include variations of products ranging from brewing company to kids toys.
“We probably won’t put it on the agenda to sue them over it, but if they want to make us a very generous offer for our domain names, we’ll certainly consider it,” says Steve Lockwood, the company secretary of Alphabet Recruitment, a recruitment firm in London.
However, BMW is quite adamant about the fact that they don’t have any plans to sell off their domain. This could indeed lead to a conflict between the two companies for a name. In fact, BMW is looking forward to finding out if any trademark infringement has taken place after the restructuring of Google. Right now ‘Alphabet.com’ is down due to the high traffic.
The big question is, does a domain name, especially .com TLD (Top Level Domain) really matter for a widely popular company like Google? Paul Graham, the founder of Y Combinator explains the importance of having .com domains. The problem with not having the .com of your name is that it signals weakness, Graham elaborates. As long as Google’s Alphabet is not going to introduce any product into the market under its own name, it won’t be a great concern. As per the US Patent and Trademark Office, any company can own the name of other company. Trademark Infringement occurs only when the consumers get baffled of both the companies.
Now onwards Google Inc. will be owned by its holding company Alphabet Inc. Anyways, both Larry Page and Sergey Brin are excited about the change. They foresee that this would empower great entrepreneurs and companies to flourish. The domain for Alphabet is https://abc.xyz/ and Google is happy about it. However, in future, if they wish to purchase a domain that can create problems like faced by many other companies.
Interesting enough to learn that Google is already owning products named with each alphabet of English. Alphabet, ranging from A to Z, represents the holding of Alphabet Inc. A for Google Analytics or Z for Google Zeitgeist, the company claims that the whole group of companies would fall under this family. It is merely a coincidence that it could well describe the importance of their new adaptation. Yet there is a fact that some of the companies like Fiber and X Lab have been setup for fulfilling the requirement.
Jim Stengel, former global marketing chief at Procter & Gamble, said “I don’t think that will be at play here. Their consumer-facing brand hasn’t changed. As a brand person, I think it was beautifully done.”
Google will be trading under its name so it remains the same though Alphabet Inc. holds the parent company. Till that no issue would rise.