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Chinese customs officials say import, export ban on iPad would be 'difficult'

post #1 of 63
Thread Starter 
Chinese customs authorities have indicated to Proview, the Chinese company that is locked with Apple over the iPad trademark in the country, that a ban on the importation and exportation of Apple's touchscreen tablet would be "difficult to implement" because of the popularity of the device in the region.

Proview Technology (Shenzhen) chairman Yang Long-san told Reuters on Wednesday that Chinese consumers' love of Apple products and the size of the market would make such a ban unwieldy. Lawyers for the company said on Tuesday that they had filed requests to block imports and exports of the iPad, a move that could grind worldwide sales of the device to a halt.

"The customs have told us that it will be difficult to implement a ban because many Chinese consumers love Apple products. The sheer size of the market is very big," Yang said.

He added that the company has applied to "some local customs" for the ban, but the local departments will need to report to their headquarters in Beijing.

Proview sued Apple over the iPad trademark in China last year, and Apple has had little success in fighting back. The iPad maker believes that it purchased the rights to the trademark in China years ago through a deal with Proview's Taiwanese division.

“We bought Proview’s world-wide rights to the iPad trademark in 10 different countries several years ago,” Apple spokeswoman Carolyn Wu said this week. “Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple in China.”

Proview has responded with a complicated argument asserting that a subsidiary in Shenzhen owned the China rights and was not present at the negotiations.




Yang went on to hint that an out-of-court settlement would be the best way to resolve the disagreement. However, Xie Xianghui, a lawyer for Proview, indicated earlier this week that the company had yet to make any proposals to Apple.

"We are now focusing our work on upholding rights and haven't made negotiation proposals to Apple yet. As for the reasons, you should ask Apple," said Xie.

The New York Times suggested on Tuesday that the threat of an import/export ban and recent seizures of iPad units in smaller Chinese cities can be taken as warnings from Proview of the "havoc it could wreak" should Apple continue to fight this legal battle. If that is indeed the case, then Yang's mention of an out-of-court settlement may be a public attempt by the company to bring Apple to the negotiating table.

Officials from China's Administration of Industry and Commerce seized 45 iPad units last week in Shijiazhuang, Hebei. Authorities in Xuzhou, a small city in Jiangsu Province, confiscated devices earlier this week, according to another Proview lawyer. Several Chinese retailers, including Amazon China, also appear to have halted sales of the iPad online, according to local magazine The Beijinger.


Chinese officials inspect iPad 2 units after confiscating them. | Credit: Hebei Youth Daily


A settlement from Apple could help Proview International Holdings, the parent company of Proview Technology (Shenzhen), reverse its current fate. The company is in danger of being de-listed from the Hong Kong stock exchange and has run into financial trouble in recent years.

[ View article on AppleInsider ]
post #2 of 63
This rumor, if true, gives me a feeling that Proview's case is going to get flushed down the toilet.

Popcorn in hand watching the events unfold!
post #3 of 63
Apple should just send them a bill for 45 units. ...They may even qualify for a bulk discount.
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post #4 of 63
Just change the name. Not that big of deal.

post #5 of 63
Notice the reasoning here. "We probably won't do it because it would be 'too difficult.'" Not "We won't do it because it complete bull@#$%."

Proview claims they hold the trademark to the iPad name in China ... great. Apple owns the trademark everywhere else, so there's nothing illegal about producing iPads in China and exporting them to countries where Apple does own the trademark (this is sidestepping the issue of whether or not Proview actually has a legitimate claim to the China trademark of the term "iPad").

If China were to ban the exportation of all iPads from the country over a domestic trademark dispute the backlash would be devastating. EVERY foreign company that has production in China would immediately start looking for alternate production facilities in friendly countries - which is a MAJOR source of China's economy and growth.

China is ballsy when it come to stealing intellectual property and technology, but they're not suicidal - banning the exportation of the iPad would bring the world down on China, and China doesn't like being in the unfavorable spotlight.
post #6 of 63
It very much looks like one subsidiary of Proview sold the rights to Apple, when the rights were owned by another subsidiary of Proview.

In such a scenario, it seems logical that the 2 subsidiaries of Proview should slug it out in court - and maybe one of the subsidiaries owes a lot of money to the other. But that would really be left hand paying right hand - at a time when both hands are poor!

Why deal with logic, when there is the rich hand of Apple, you have a very cooperative legal system! I have read that the Chinese legal system is impossible to navigate - but I guess that only applies to outsiders.

I cannot even imagine that the Chinese legal system actually entertains such a lawsuit - let alone allowing units to be seized and considering an import/export ban on the iPad! Quite obviously, everyone has a stake in Proview's extortion game.

This should a major lesson to all companies that insist on manufacturing in China. It makes tremendous sense to have some diversity - even if it comes at a much higher cost. For a company like Apple, this is a no brainer. Especially if it means they have enhanced production at a time when production is their number one constraint.

Brazil is a good first step, but Apple should also look at other markets like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, etc. And more importantly, Apple should look to diversify outside of Foxconn - what Proview did today, Foxconn could attempt tomorrow - and Foxconn is infinitely more connected in the establishment than Proview ever was.
post #7 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

And more importantly, Apple should look to diversify outside of Foxconn - what Proview did today, Foxconn could attempt tomorrow - and Foxconn is infinitely more connected in the establishment than Proview ever was.

That's also my impression. Foxconn is more powerful than Proview ever be. It could turn back and bite Apple one day.
post #8 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by matrix07 View Post

That's also my impression. Foxconn is more powerful than Proview ever be. It could turn back and bite Apple one day.

Like Samsung... But Foxconn is a different kind of company than Samsung and I don't really foresee Foxconn trying to develop, manufacture and market their own-branded products.
post #9 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

It very much looks like one subsidiary of Proview sold the rights to Apple, when the rights were owned by another subsidiary of Proview.

In such a scenario, it seems logical that the 2 subsidiaries of Proview should slug it out in court - and maybe one of the subsidiaries owes a lot of money to the other. But that would really be left hand paying right hand - at a time when both hands are poor!

Why deal with logic, when there is the rich hand of Apple, you have a very cooperative legal system! I have read that the Chinese legal system is impossible to navigate - but I guess that only applies to outsiders.

I cannot even imagine that the Chinese legal system actually entertains such a lawsuit - let alone allowing units to be seized and considering an import/export ban on the iPad! Quite obviously, everyone has a stake in Proview's extortion game.

This should a major lesson to all companies that insist on manufacturing in China. It makes tremendous sense to have some diversity - even if it comes at a much higher cost. For a company like Apple, this is a no brainer. Especially if it means they have enhanced production at a time when production is their number one constraint.

Brazil is a good first step, but Apple should also look at other markets like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, etc. And more importantly, Apple should look to diversify outside of Foxconn - what Proview did today, Foxconn could attempt tomorrow - and Foxconn is infinitely more connected in the establishment than Proview ever was.

Well summarized. Indeed alot of MNCs didn't learn their lessons until a hefty price-tag comes along.

Putting everything in one basket, esp. China where nothing cannot be changed with the right 'negotiations' and 'connections'.

Those who have done business deals in China will know...
post #10 of 63
Questions:

1. What does global Proview say about this issue? They know that they sold the name so why don't they ask the Chinese group to stand down?

2. The iPad product that Proview supposedly makes, is that sold exclusively in China?


Proview is skating on thin ice. If they don't invite all their subsidiaries to their international negotiations, that's their problem.
Proview China is behaving like greedy Somali Pirates and should not be negotiated with.
They are only causing problems for other Chinese retailers who will no doubt turn against them.

Time will tell.
post #11 of 63
I like this bit.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Yang went on to hint that an out-of-court settlement would be the best way to resolve the disagreement.

"Give me my bribe, please"
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post #12 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

It very much looks like one subsidiary of Proview sold the rights to Apple, when the rights were owned by another subsidiary of Proview.

In such a scenario, it seems logical that the 2 subsidiaries of Proview should slug it out in court - and maybe one of the subsidiaries owes a lot of money to the other. But that would really be left hand paying right hand - at a time when both hands are poor!

Why deal with logic, when there is the rich hand of Apple, you have a very cooperative legal system! I have read that the Chinese legal system is impossible to navigate - but I guess that only applies to outsiders.

I cannot even imagine that the Chinese legal system actually entertains such a lawsuit - let alone allowing units to be seized and considering an import/export ban on the iPad! Quite obviously, everyone has a stake in Proview's extortion game.

This should a major lesson to all companies that insist on manufacturing in China. It makes tremendous sense to have some diversity - even if it comes at a much higher cost. For a company like Apple, this is a no brainer. Especially if it means they have enhanced production at a time when production is their number one constraint.

Brazil is a good first step, but Apple should also look at other markets like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, etc. And more importantly, Apple should look to diversify outside of Foxconn - what Proview did today, Foxconn could attempt tomorrow - and Foxconn is infinitely more connected in the establishment than Proview ever was.

Very true, Apple is a company with a market cap of $500B, including $100B in cash. All of this is vulnerable to a corrupt dictatorial regime and the companies it is involved with. The supply chain is optimized for profits and has few back-up plans and almost no margin of safety. There are all kind of risk like supply chain risks, political risks, natural upheavals, etc.

Worse is the supply chain feeding the competition. The economies of scale paid by Apple can feed the competition like Samsung, Speaking of which, Apple is fighting them in court. Meanwhile, Apple single sources the A class of CPUs to them, buy their panels and even finances them. Duh!

Strategically, Apple should have invested in the Good Ol' USA. Yes, it would have required a huge investment in automation, but economies of scale in automation would have been made for the cost of labor. Look, even Samsung is building a chip plant here in Texas. Instead of Samsung, how about IBM, TXN or even Intel (for a price). They have much more integrity and would unlikely to double cross Apple like Samsung did.
post #13 of 63
Seems like a desperate "All in" kind of move!
post #14 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexkhan2000 View Post

Like Samsung... But Foxconn is a different kind of company than Samsung and I don't really foresee Foxconn trying to develop, manufacture and market their own-branded products.

The point is not whether Foxconn will ever make and market their own branded products. What if there is a dispute in the future? Foxconn, with all its foxconnections in the Chinese establishment will be able to really turn the screws into Apple. If Apple has Foxconn as their sole manufacturing partner, they would be well and truly f***ed if Foxconn turns against them. They need some buffer against this. And the only way is if Apple has other partners in other countries.
post #15 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by copeland View Post

Seems like a desperate "All in" kind of move!

Kind of... except that even their "All" is pretty insignificant. They are in even worse situation than Kodak was, when Kodak attempted their shakedown of Apple.

But who knows what they can pull off in China!
post #16 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

The point is not whether Foxconn will ever make and market their own branded products. What if there is a dispute in the future? Foxconn, with all its foxconnections in the Chinese establishment will be able to really turn the screws into Apple. If Apple has Foxconn as their sole manufacturing partner, they would be well and truly f***ed if Foxconn turns against them. They need some buffer against this. And the only way is if Apple has other partners in other countries.

Apple is not the only large company to use Foxconn, not by a long shot. You think Foxconn would jeopardize their lucrative contracts industry wide with a power play?
post #17 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

It very much looks like one subsidiary of Proview sold the rights to Apple, when the rights were owned by another subsidiary of Proview.

If that's the case, then Apple hold as much ownership over the trademark than the party who sold it to them. Nemo dat and all that jazz.

Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

In such a scenario, it seems logical that the 2 subsidiaries of Proview should slug it out in court - and maybe one of the subsidiaries owes a lot of money to the other. But that would really be left hand paying right hand - at a time when both hands are poor!

Really the onus would be on apple to sue the first party for perpetuating a fraud.

As for all the people baying for an immediate pull out from china. Kiss goodbye your iPads for a good twelve months whilst the manufacturing capacity comes online elsewhere. Apple won't do that.
post #18 of 63
This is much ado about nothing. While the media may see it as something feeding their inane 24/7 cycle, there really is no story here. Just a very small company trying to get its 10 million or so. Next.
post #19 of 63
"... The economies of scale paid by Apple..." "... but economies of scale in automation..."

Seems like today is "economies of scale" quotes for this poster...but...that really doesn't hold up since the manufacturing process evolves rapidly in Apple's approach and requires quick adaptability, which S. Jobs made a big issue of in dealing with outsourcing. For example the wildly popular and now copied unibody form was built on the back of a heavy manufacturing process in including extrusion and milling by Catcher.

"... Instead of Samsung, how about IBM, TXN or even Intel..."
"Strategically, Apple should have invested in the Good Ol' USA. "

Seems like an interest in investing in the "Good Ol' USA" may sound folksy but almost certainly chip manufacturing considerations, among thousands of other process decisions bear on financial, quality and innovative considerations, pipeline of already existing manufacturers, agility in change and on and on. A bit simplistic approach to complex enterprise decisions.
post #20 of 63
If Proview did get a ban of the iPad in China...well that's easy. They just need to make Chinese manuals, boxes and the iPad itself without the word "iPad" on it. Everyone will still call it an iPad and life goes on.
post #21 of 63
how does "bought pin 10 countries" = "worldwide"

aren't there more than 10 countries in the world?

or are there only 10 that matter? or only 10 that have anything that resembles copyright laws?
post #22 of 63
I didn't see a mention anywhere of a preliminary injunction that would justify a seizure of assets. Also, I don't know if there are any iPads to ban from importing, as the iPad is assembled in the country. That said, I don't know how Chinese law works.
post #23 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

how does "bought pin 10 countries" = "worldwide"

aren't there more than 10 countries in the world?

or are there only 10 that matter? or only 10 that have anything that resembles copyright laws?

It's only mean Proview has right in 10 countries, I guess.
post #24 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by djsherly View Post

If that's the case, then Apple hold as much ownership over the trademark than the party who sold it to them. Nemo dat and all that jazz.

True - but I am not sure Nemo dat applies in this case. I would expect that Apple negotiated with the HK headquarters of Proview. I don't know the facts of the case in so much detail, but it is very likely that the Shenzhen subsidiary folds up into the HK parent. It would be ridiculous to apply Nemo dat in such circumstances!

Quote:
Really the onus would be on apple to sue the first party for perpetuating a fraud.

As for all the people baying for an immediate pull out from china. Kiss goodbye your iPads for a good twelve months whilst the manufacturing capacity comes online elsewhere. Apple won't do that.

Again - this would make sense if the parent and the subsidiary were unrelated entities. But in this case, it is ridiculous.

In all likelihood, some unknown subsidiary of Apple negotiated with Proview Head Quarters for the rights to the iPad name in 10 countries. Not knowing that Apple was the final beneficiary, Proview must have sold it to them for a song. Especially a company that is financial trouble could easily have wanted to lay their hands on any money coming in.

Now when they realized that they sold it to Apple, they are trying to somehow extort a higher price.

I think more than anything else, it is China's policies and its legal systems that are on trial here. At the end of the day, this will not impact Apple. Apple will pay if it has to, and most likely the payment will not be material to Apple anyway.

But for China, this is a totally different matter. They have a lot to lose.
post #25 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

We bought Proviews world-wide rights to the iPad trademark in 10 different countries several years ago, Apple spokeswoman Carolyn Wu said this week. Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple in China.

Proview has responded with a complicated argument asserting that a subsidiary in Shenzhen owned the China rights and was not present at the negotiations.

Subsidiaries do not need to be at the negotiations. As long as the parent company owns controlling interest in the subsidiary, the parent company can make decisions like this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofino View Post

Just change the name. Not that big of deal.


Which would be foolish and expensive. Apple's global brand recognition is sky high and this would damage it. Furthermore, it would open the door for more fraudulent complaints against Apple.

Apple will probably want to wipe the floor with these people to set an example.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blursd View Post

Notice the reasoning here. "We probably won't do it because it would be 'too difficult.'" Not "We won't do it because it complete bull@#$%."

That's the Chinese culture. The Chinese rarely say 'no flipping way'. No matter how much they are opposed to an idea, the response is usually 'that would be difficult'. The remarks suggest that Proview's complaints don't really carry much weight with the Customs office.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blursd View Post

Proview claims they hold the trademark to the iPad name in China ... great. Apple owns the trademark everywhere else, so there's nothing illegal about producing iPads in China and exporting them to countries where Apple does own the trademark (this is sidestepping the issue of whether or not Proview actually has a legitimate claim to the China trademark of the term "iPad").

Absolutely true. Refusing to export them would be a violation of world trade laws.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blursd View Post

If China were to ban the exportation of all iPads from the country over a domestic trademark dispute the backlash would be devastating. EVERY foreign company that has production in China would immediately start looking for alternate production facilities in friendly countries - which is a MAJOR source of China's economy and growth.

China is ballsy when it come to stealing intellectual property and technology, but they're not suicidal - banning the exportation of the iPad would bring the world down on China, and China doesn't like being in the unfavorable spotlight.

Agree 100%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

It very much looks like one subsidiary of Proview sold the rights to Apple, when the rights were owned by another subsidiary of Proview.

In such a scenario, it seems logical that the 2 subsidiaries of Proview should slug it out in court - and maybe one of the subsidiaries owes a lot of money to the other. But that would really be left hand paying right hand - at a time when both hands are poor!

That's not quite what happened - at least according to the above report. Apple bought the rights from the parent company, but the parent company is now trying to back out because one subsidiary was not present. That argument isn't going to fly. That would be like GE backing out of a huge engine deal with Boeing because some tiny subsidiary in Georgia wasn't at the negotiating table. The parent company has the right to make decisions like this even without all subsidiaries being present.

Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

Why deal with logic, when there is the rich hand of Apple, you have a very cooperative legal system! I have read that the Chinese legal system is impossible to navigate - but I guess that only applies to outsiders.

I cannot even imagine that the Chinese legal system actually entertains such a lawsuit - let alone allowing units to be seized and considering an import/export ban on the iPad! Quite obviously, everyone has a stake in Proview's extortion game.

This should a major lesson to all companies that insist on manufacturing in China. It makes tremendous sense to have some diversity - even if it comes at a much higher cost. For a company like Apple, this is a no brainer. Especially if it means they have enhanced production at a time when production is their number one constraint.

Brazil is a good first step, but Apple should also look at other markets like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, etc. And more importantly, Apple should look to diversify outside of Foxconn - what Proview did today, Foxconn could attempt tomorrow - and Foxconn is infinitely more connected in the establishment than Proview ever was.

The Chinese system is improving rapidly and is not as bad as you're suggesting. The smaller, local courts are often incompetent and make decisions like this, but they tend to get fixed pretty quickly when appealed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

how does "bought pin 10 countries" = "worldwide"

aren't there more than 10 countries in the world?

or are there only 10 that matter? or only 10 that have anything that resembles copyright laws?

No. Proview had the trademark in 10 countries. Apple previously had the trademark (almost?) everywhere else. So when Apple acquired the 10 countries from Proview, Apple could claim to have trademark worldwide.
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post #26 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pendergast View Post

Apple is not the only large company to use Foxconn, not by a long shot. You think Foxconn would jeopardize their lucrative contracts industry wide with a power play?

You never know how the game plays out. Three years back, did you expect the situation between Samsung and its largest customer to get so ugly? 4 years back, did you expect Apple and Google to be fighting a "thermonuclear war"?

If Apple gets a decisive victory against Samsung, who can predict how Samsung would respond? Samsung has dozens of other major customers - but would you bet that Samsung would not try everything in its power to hurt Apple?
post #27 of 63
That Proview is being threatened with delisting should indicate that Proview will not have much clout. Locally, the judges might have an interest because they own Proview stock, but outside that region, they likely will have little.

Proview looks like they've been sitting on their "rights" for two years and in financial straits now they're throwing a Hail Mary, hoping to stay in business. Actually that's not the case either. Whatever the business they are in now is dead, and their employees are cooked, but the owners and investors want to live the good life with an IP income stream from Apple.
post #28 of 63
How do you ban the importation of a product that's already (and only?) made in that country?

This whole thing strikes me as a copy-cat move of that Unix squabble initiated by SCO years ago.
post #29 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by blursd View Post

Notice the reasoning here. "We probably won't do it because it would be 'too difficult.'" Not "We won't do it because it complete bull@#$%."

Proview claims they hold the trademark to the iPad name in China ... great. Apple owns the trademark everywhere else, so there's nothing illegal about producing iPads in China and exporting them to countries where Apple does own the trademark (this is sidestepping the issue of whether or not Proview actually has a legitimate claim to the China trademark of the term "iPad").

If China were to ban the exportation of all iPads from the country over a domestic trademark dispute the backlash would be devastating. EVERY foreign company that has production in China would immediately start looking for alternate production facilities in friendly countries - which is a MAJOR source of China's economy and growth.

China is ballsy when it come to stealing intellectual property and technology, but they're not suicidal - banning the exportation of the iPad would bring the world down on China, and China doesn't like being in the unfavorable spotlight.

I agree it is ridiculous to claim Apple can't export else where. I wonder if iPad in Chinese is registered by Proview since they went to the trouble of registering it in English? Maybe Apple could just use the Chinese name iPad in China what ever that may be.
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post #30 of 63
Quote:
A settlement from Apple could help Proview International Holdings, the parent company of Proview Technology (Shenzhen), reverse its current fate. The company is in danger of being de-listed from the Hong Kong stock exchange and has run into financial trouble in recent years.

So in other words PIH has very little to lose by throwing everything they can at this since they are going downhill anyway.
post #31 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofino View Post

Just change the name. Not that big of deal.


Have you ever looked at an iPad. It does not SCREAM the name iPad. Its pretty much hidden. So what is this company really looking for. Its parent company sold the rights. Plus I am pretty sure getting a name like "iPad" in a company that speaks and WRITES in chinese is pretty stupid unless you are just cyber squatting, sell your rights for money, then pretend you never heard of your parent company selling the english name...

[racist comment removed]

Just a thought,
en
post #32 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofino View Post

Just change the name. Not that big of deal.



Actually it is a big deal. Proview's parent company, according to Apple, sold the rights and is now recanting on the contract with this 'oh we didn't actually own the rights to China' stuff. Why? Because they didn't know they were dealing with someone that was working on behalf of Apple and they undersold and now they want more money.

So Proview, by that deal, doesn't have the grounds to do any of this. And they should be shut down over it.

Frankly I think that Apple should give in on the sales and import issues. So what if it will be hard for the Chinese government to keep out scalpers etc. That's for them, not Apple, to figure out. Focus on the export issue until a year or so from now when they can just yank iPad production out of China along with perhaps the iPhone. Sorry China for the lost jobs but Apple has to protect themselves and their ability to see their products in the world market. Cause the world doesn't revolve around China, or at least shouldn't

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post #33 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleSauce007 View Post

Questions:

1. What does global Proview say about this issue? They know that they sold the name so why don't they ask the Chinese group to stand down?.


They are the ones saying "oops, no we didn't control those rights so they weren't included. Sorry we didn't tell you that years ago"

Why? Money. The mark turns out to be worth more than what they sold it for, a lot more. They want a piece of that.

Personally I think Apple should sue them for bad faith dealings.

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post #34 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

They are the ones saying "oops, no we didn't control those rights so they weren't included. Sorry we didn't tell you that years ago"

Why? Money. The mark turns out to be worth more than what they sold it for, a lot more. They want a piece of that.

Personally I think Apple should sue them for bad faith dealings.

Did Apple really deal directly with the parent company? I had the impression that they bought the rights from the HK subsidiary. If they dealt with the parent, then your assessment appears sound.
post #35 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by macarena View Post

In all likelihood, some unknown subsidiary of Apple negotiated with Proview Head Quarters for the rights to the iPad name in 10 countries. Not knowing that Apple was the final beneficiary, Proview must have sold it to them for a song.

They did: IP Application Development (IPAD) bought the rights for 35,000 pounds. They then sold the rights to Apple for 10 pounds several months later.
post #36 of 63
Let me recaption the 'confiscation' photo.

Chinese officials split up iPad 2 units after stealing them.
post #37 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aportfoliodoctor.com View Post

.Apple will slice and dice all allegations with excellent legal representation in a
court of law


This has already been to court. Apple lost.

They bought all the worldwide rights that one company owned. But that company did not own the rights to China.

The Chinese trademark was registered to a different company. The one that Apple bought from did not own the Chinese rights. Apple did not buy the Chinese rights to the name.

This all seems pretty cut and dried to me. Too bad for Apple. Their due diligence team F'ed up.
post #38 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

how does "bought pin 10 countries" = "worldwide"

aren't there more than 10 countries in the world?

or are there only 10 that matter? or only 10 that have anything that resembles copyright laws?

The company that Apple dealt with owned the mark in 10 countries.

However, the mark was registered in at least 11 countries. Apple didn't buy the rights in China because the company they dealt with did not own the rights in China.
post #39 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post

This has already been to court. Apple lost.

They bought all the worldwide rights that one company owned. But that company did not own the rights to China.

The Chinese trademark was registered to a different company. The one that Apple bought from did not own the Chinese rights. Apple did not buy the Chinese rights to the name.

This all seems pretty cut and dried to me. Too bad for Apple. Their due diligence team F'ed up.

I tried doing a little digging, and it may not be quite so cut and dry (or, I could be wrong ). I won't repost the full text of my ramblings :P, just a snippet and link:

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodGrief View Post

*1) The sale explicitly includes the rights held by Shenzhen in China. Shenzhen isn't in default at this point, and is a subsidiary of International. This means International has a minimum of 50% ownership of Shenzhen, and therefore <can> make the unilateral decision to sell a Shenzhen asset to a third party, being a controlling owner of the LTD company. (International owns Shenzhen, which owns the trademark - therefore, International effectively owns the trademark - or at the very least can legally decide on Shenzhen's behalf to sell an asset.)
post #40 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodGrief View Post

I tried doing a little digging, and it may not be quite so cut and dry (or, I could be wrong ). I won't repost the full text of my ramblings :P, just a snippet and link:

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodGrief
*1) The sale explicitly includes the rights held by Shenzhen in China. Shenzhen isn't in default at this point, and is a subsidiary of International. This means International has a minimum of 50% ownership of Shenzhen, and therefore <can> make the unilateral decision to sell a Shenzhen asset to a third party, being a controlling owner of the LTD company. (International owns Shenzhen, which owns the trademark - therefore, International effectively owns the trademark - or at the very least can legally decide on Shenzhen's behalf to sell an asset.)


The rights in China were not held by the company that Apple dealt with, according to the court.

Whether that company can bind a subsidiary is an issue - and the court has seemingly held that they cannot, or at least, in this situation, did not.

None of us really know what the contract said. However, the court knows exactly what the contract said.

The court decision is being appealed by Apple. They may or may not win on appeal.

It is likely that Chinese law is not identical in every respect to western law.

We need to separate our common-sense western notions of fairness from what the Chinese courts tell us about the status of the Chinese contract under Chinese law.

It is entirely possible that Apple screwed up big time.
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