Decision in AXA domain name dispute

On 20 August 2018, Bart GODDYN handed down a decision that ordered the transfer of the domain name “axaxlgroup.eu” to the legitimate owner of the well-known trademark “AXA”.

AXA SA, is the holding company of the AXA Group which was founded in 1817 through the merger of several insurance companies. The AXA Group is known as a world leader in three major lines of business: property and casualty insurance, life insurance and savings, and asset management, both B2C and B2B. AXA Group currently serves 107 million customers around the world, employing 165,000 people in 64 countries. On 5 March 2018, AXA SA announced to acquire XL Group, a leading global property & casualty commercial lines insurer and reinsurer with strong presence in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific.

In the “axaxlgroup.eu” case, the panel accepted all of AXA’s arguments that the disputed domain name was confusingly similar to the complainant’s “AXA” trademark. The panel was also of the opinion that it was significantly demonstrated that the respondent registered the domain name without rights or legitimate interest in the domain name and that the respondent registered or used the domain name in bad faith.

For this matter, Bart was appointed as a sole panelist by the Czech Arbitration Court. The Czech Arbitration Court (based in Prague, Czech Republic) is an ADR provider for .eu domain name disputes. It helps brand and trade mark owners, domain name registrants and registration companies all over the world to resolve conflicts in a fast, efficient and cost-effective fashion. Bart serves as a panelist for domain name dispute resolution at the Czech Arbitration Court since 2006. In the past, he already ordered the transfer of domain names to trade mark owners such as Sanofi, Danone and more recently Liu.Jo.