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WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Lancôme Parfums et Beauté & Cie v. SL, Proteccion de Dominios
Case No. D2001-0910
1. The Parties
1.1 The Complainant is Lancôme Parfums et Beauté & Cie of 29 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, 75008 Paris, France. The Complaint is represented by Ms. Sophie de Malherbe of L’Oréal, 62 rue d’Alsace, 92 583 Clichy cedex, France.
1.2 The Respondent is SL, Proteccion de Dominios of Velazquez 138, Madrid, Madrid 28006, Spain. The Respondent is not represented in this proceeding.
2. The Domain Names and Registrar
2.1 The domain names at issue are <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com>. The Registrar of both domain names is Network Solutions, Inc.
3. Procedural History
3.1 The Complaint was dated July 16, 2001. The WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center ("The Center") acknowledged the receipt of the Complaint on July 18, 2001. On July 30, 2001, the Respondent was officially notified that an administrative proceeding had been commenced against him by email and by courier with attachments.
3.2 No response to the Complaint has been filed. Notice of the proceedings was served on the Respondent in accordance with the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("the Policy"). Notification of Respondent Default was served on August 20, 2001. On September 11, 2001, having received the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence from Ms. Madeleine de Cock Buning, the Center transmitted to the parties a Notification of Appointment of Administrative Panel and Projected Decision, in which Ms. Madeleine de Cock Buning was formally appointed as the Sole Panelist.
3.3 The date scheduled for the Panel to render its decision is September 24, 2001.
4. Factual Background
4.1 The Complainant relies on the international trademark LANCOME (No. 2R157.412, the French trademark LANCOME (No. 1.557.084) and the American trademark LANCOME (No. 425.129), evidence of which is provided in Annex III to the complaint.
4.2 Both domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> are registered in the name of the Respondent. The domain names do not resolve to any active web sites as observed inter alia by Complainant in July, 2001.
5. Parties’ Contentions
5.1 These are set out at length in the Complaint but may be summarized as follows:
- Complainant is the owner of several internationally known trademarks LANCOME (see Annex III).
- The domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> are confusingly similar to the registered trademarks of Complainant. There is a high risk of confusion for the consumer who may think that both domain names directly refer to Complainant’s products.
- The Respondent has no legitimate reason to register or maintain the domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> and has failed to articulate any rights in or legitimate reason for registering these domain names.
- There is no relation between Respondent and Complainant, and Respondent is not a licensee nor is he otherwise authorized to use Complainant’s trademark.
- The domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> are unrelated to the Respondent and the Respondent does not use these domain names in its business or as its corporate name.
- The domain names should be considered as having been registered and used in bad faith. Due to the fame and the goodwill associated with the LANCOME trade mark, Respondent could not have ignored the right of the Complainant while obtaining the registered domain names. Several other domain names have been registered by Respondent that incorporate famous trademarks.
5.2 The Respondent has not provided any submissions to this Panel.
6. Discussion and Findings
6.1 The Panel has reviewed the Complaint and the documents annexed to the Complaint. In light of these materials this Panel finds as set out below.
6.2 This Panel does not find there are any exceptional circumstances within paragraph 5(e) of the ICANN Rules so as to prevent this Panel in determining the Complaint, notwithstanding the failure of the Respondent to lodge a Response. Details of these proceedings have been served in accordance with the relevant requirements, namely in compliance with Rule 2(a) of the ICANN Rules.
6.3 The domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> are confusingly similar to the registered trademarks of Complainant. As numerous prior ICANN panels have recognized, the incorporation of a trademark in its entirety is sufficient to establish that a domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the complainant's registered mark. See, e.g., Quixtar Investments, Inc. v. Dennis Hoffman, Case No. D2000-0253 (WIPO May 29, 2000) (finding that QUIXTAR and <quixtarmortgage.com> are legally identical); Nikon, Inc. and Nikon Corporation v. Technilab., Inc, Case No. D2000-1774 (WIPO Feb. 26, 2001) (incorporation of Nikon mark into domain name <nikondealers.com> satisfies first prong of Policy). The addition of other terms in the domain names does not affect a finding that the domain names are identical or confusingly similar to the Complainant's registered trademark since there exists a substantial risk of confusion as to the origin of the registered domain names.
6.4 There is no evidence to show that Respondent had any legitimate reason to register the domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> or any intent to use these domain names in any manner unconnected with the Complainant’s business. Absent such evidence, together with the fact that several other domain names have been registered by Respondent that incorporate various famous trademarks without any apparent legitimate reason, the Panel concludes that the Complainant is correct and that the domain names were registered and are being maintained with the intention of either reselling them to the Complainant or preventing without due cause the Complainant’s use of the domain names in the hope that this would encourage the Complainant to make a payment to the Respondent to gain control of the domain names. This constitutes registration and use in bad faith within the meaning of the Policy.
7.1 In light of the above findings, the Panel’s decision is as set out below.
7.2 The domain names are confusingly similar to the Complainant’s trademarks (see paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy).
7.3 The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> (see paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy).
7.4 The domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> were registered and are being used in bad faith (see paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy).
7.5 This Panel directs that the domain names <ladylancome.com> and <misslancome.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Madeleine de Cock Buning
Dated: September 19, 2001