Glaxo Plc v Glaxowellcome Limited: ChD 1996

The defendant company registration agent had registered the name Glaxowellcome Limited shortly after the announcement of Glaxo Plc’s intention to make a take-over bid for Wellcome and if it succeeded to re-name itself Glaxo-Wellcome Plc. He then offered to sell the company to Glaxo Plc at a high price. The company had not traded, but it was considered likely that it would, it being implicit in the demand for a high price for the company and that the Defendant was threatening that if it was not paid he would use or transfer the company to someone else who would use it to injure Glaxo’s goodwill. An application was made for an interlocutory injunction.
Held: The Judge granted a mandatory interlocutory injunction requiring the name of the company to be changed. This amounted to final relief, because the object was to enable Glaxo themselves to change their name to Glaxo-Wellcome, thereby making a restoration of the original position virtually impossible. Lightman J: ‘the court will not countenance any such pre-emptive strike of registering companies with names where others have the goodwill in those names and the registering party demands a price for changing the names’.


Lightman J


[1996] FSR 388


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedMarks and Spencer Plc, Ladbrokes Plc, J Sainsbury Plc, Virgin Enterprises Ltd, British Telecommunications Plc, Telecom Securior Cellular Radio Ltd v One In A Million and Others PatC 28-Nov-1997
The registration of internet domain names which would infringe trade marks and potentially facilitate passing off can be protected summarily by quia timet injunction. The defendants were dealers in domain names and the use of a trade mark in the . .
CitedBritish Telecommunications Plc; Virgin Enterprises Ltd; J Sainsbury Plc; Marks and Spencer Plc and Ladbroke Group Plc v One In a Million Ltd and others CA 23-Jul-1998
Registration of a distinctive Internet domain name using registered trade marks and company names could be an infringement of a registered Trade Mark, and also passing off. It was proper to grant quia timet injunctions where necessary to stop . .
CitedGlobal Projects Management Ltd v Citigroup Inc and Others ChD 17-Oct-2005
GPM had acquired an internet domain name ‘’. Citigroup alleged passing off and trade mark infringement. The claimant complained of an unjustified threat. The defendant counterclaimed, and sought summary judgment.
Held: The . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Intellectual Property, Company

Updated: 01 May 2022; Ref: scu.239034