Sapphire Systems faces name change after Aussie legal battle
- 01 June, 2017 00:10
Sapphire Systems has been ordered by an Australian court to change its name in the local market after going head to head with Australian software vendor, SapphireOne, in the Federal Court.
SapphireOne, an Australian-headquartered enterprise resource planning software vendor, took Sapphire Systems, a global SAP partner headquartered in the United Kingdom, to court late last year over alleged trademark infringement.
Specifically, the local software vendor alleged that Sapphire Systems had infringed its SAPPHIRE and SapphireOne trademarks, which it registered in Australia in 2004 and 2003, respectively.
On 17 May, Federal Court of Australia Justice, Robert Bromwich, who heard the case in Sydney, handed down a ruling ordering Sapphire Systems to change its name and branding in Australia, and flagging an investigation into potential damages arising from the alleged trademark infringement.
According to court documents, Sapphire Systems is set to change in the local market to Argentis Systems.
Established in 1993, Sapphire Systems has built a reputation locally and further afield as a provider of enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems and financial management solutions (FMS).
The company claims a strong and lengthy relationship with the likes of SAP and Infor, establishing itself as a global partner for Infor Sunsystems and SAP Business One.
From an initial staff of six, the company claims to now employ over 200 people across its global offices in the UK, the USA, Australia and Asia.
Over the past 20 years, the company has built a team of technical and service personnel who have led some 2,500 system implementations.
Now, the company is preparing to undertake the court-imposed branding change exercise, with the Justice Bromwich ordering the company to “be restrained” from using the trademarks owned by SapphireOne in Australia.
Further, the company has been ordered to restrain from using as a trade mark “any mark which is substantially identical with or deceptively similar” to those owned by SapphireOne in the local market.
ARN understands that the rebrand is expected to become official on 5 June, with local partners and customers set to be informed of the change on or after that date.
Justice Bromwich also ordered that, by 3 July, Sapphire Systems had to deliver up to SapphireOne or destroy all brochures, marketing materials and packaging bearing either of the trademarks in question, which had been used by the UK company for the purpose of, selling, offering for sale, marketing for sale, supplying, distributing or otherwise dealing in its software products in Australia.
The question of which party should pay for the court costs related to the case has been put on hold for the time being.
However, Justice Bromwich ordered that an inquiry in relation to the assessment of damages or accounts of profit be undertaken, opening up the possibility for SapphireOne to claim damages or compensation against the UK company.
Bromwich ordered that Sapphire Systems provide an estimate of the profits it says were made from its conduct in selling, distributing or otherwise dealing with its software products and engaging in consultancy, training and education in relation to its products in the local market.