ICBC legal action protects name and customers

    VANCOUVER, Aug. 5 /CNW/ - ICBC has launched legal proceedings against a
Vancouver company which is using ICBC's official marks to market its websites
and sell a manual to consumers without ICBC's authorization.
    "We are taking the action to protect our name and to protect our
customers from being misled into buying goods or services that they believe
are approved, authorized, or endorsed by ICBC when in fact they are not," said
Jeff Schulz, ICBC's vice president of strategic marketing.
    ICBC has an obligation to protect its official marks from unauthorized
use, both to protect customers from confusion, and to protect its valuable and
recognizable brand. These official marks are protected by the federal
Trade-marks Act, and are very important to ICBC.
    The Statement of Claim seeks an order that Stainton Ventures Ltd. of
Vancouver stop using ICBC's official marks to market its websites and in
connection with the sale of a manual known as the "ICBC Claim Guide" without
authorization from ICBC.
    While ICBC does not object to the text of the websites or the manual, it
is concerned about the unauthorized use of its official marks and brand for
commercial purposes. ICBC was compelled to bring court proceedings because the
company refused to stop using ICBC's official marks and brand in its business.
    "Apart from the need to protect our marks and our brand from being
adopted by others for their own businesses, we feel there is a real risk of
customer confusion - thinking, at least initially, that they are dealing with
a company that is endorsed by ICBC when that is not the case," said Schulz.
    Owners of several other websites have adopted and used ICBC's official
marks for commercial and other purposes. ICBC considers each situation on a
case-by-case basis, but always with the objective of doing what is required to
protect its brand and the public.

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Mark Jan Vrem, (604) 982-2476

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