- We recommend choosing a wordmark as your first mark. It gives the broadest scope of protection and wordmarks are rarely changed, unlike logos.
- A logo as a first mark is recommended if the mark you are trying to register is considered weak (descriptive, for example).
- A combined mark is a solid choice in many countries. But you must use your mark as it was registered at least sometimes. Therefore, a wordmark is still preferred as it remains the best value for money.
1. What can be registered in Angola?
We recommend choosing a wordmark as your first mark. It gives the broadest scope of protection and wordmarks are rarely changed, unlike logos.
A logo as a first mark is recommended if the mark you are trying to register is considered weak (descriptive, for example).
A combined mark is a solid choice in many countries. But you must use your mark as it was registered at least sometimes. Therefore, a wordmark is still preferred as it remains the best value for money.
1.1 Trademark Classification in Angola
A mark must be associated with products and/or services. These products/services are divided into 45 classes. The names of the products and services are determined either by the Angolan Institute of Industrial Property (IAPI) or by the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization). The main list of acceptable terms is the Nice classification, but each country might have its variations.
If you already have a trademark anywhere, you can send us the details and we might be able to use the same list of goods. In any case, we will check if the products are acceptable and help you create a description according to the local standards.
1.2 Registrable and unregistrable marks
Some trademarks can't be registered. In short, those are descriptive, misleading, offensive, or generic marks (this is not the full list). Descriptive marks describe your products or services, generic are the names of your product, etc. Some cases are not straightforward and it's hard to determine if a mark is descriptive right away.
1.3 Weak and Strong Trademarks
Some marks are weaker than others, even if the marks can be registered. There are suggestive marks like Microsoft, dictionary words with no direct association with the products or services such as Apple and made-up words or fanciful marks, i.e. Xerox.
The strongest marks are fanciful or made-up words, but from the marketing point of view, a suggestive mark might be preferable. A suggestive mark is a mark that SUGGEST a quality of the product. Microsoft is a suggestive mark, you understand that it has something to do with software and this makes it easier for a regular customer to remember the mark.
1.4 Similarity in Angola
If there are similar marks in Angola your mark might be refused or might receive an opposition. Similar doesn't mean identical. They can sound similar, mean similar things or look similar. There is no 100% algorithm to determine similar marks, each case is different and we rely on the experience of our attorneys.
1.5 Trademark Study in Angola
During our study we check if your mark is registrable and search for similar marks. Once you get the results and our recommendations any uncertainty is removed and the process outcome becomes clearer.
2. Free Trademark Search in Angola
We offer an online free trademark search in Angola, you can request it on this page. It's free and we'll check the register within a day. Our search is carried out by professional trademark consultants and this will increase its value.
We may spot that your mark is descriptive or generic and inform you beforehand. Some marks can't be registered in Angola and we will notify you if this is the case.
We send search results within a day and we might contact you even earlier to ask about your business niche and your products. You will get a list of identical marks and can request additional details. That's free as well. Sometimes we can get additional details of a trademark only from a special paid database. In this case, we will inform you beforehand.
3. Trademark Registration in Angola
3.1 Your Registration Plan
Step 1. Start with a Free TM Search. We will check if there are any obvious conflicts. You will know if it's worth moving forward with the mark.
Step 2. Learning more about your brand. To file a trademark, we will need to know the owner address and name, the trademark and if it has a logo and what services/products it covers.
Optional Step 3. Attorney's opinion (a.k.a. Study) In some cases we may recommend asking our attorney to review the case and prepare a detailed registration report. That's an optional non-obligatory service.
Step 4. Request registration and submit your payment. The process is completely online and we'll request your mark within 3-5 days and you will get a filing confirmation.
3.2 Recommendations for applicants in Angola
File your trademark in Angola. Even if you do not plan yet to extend your business in Angola. It is especially important to file your trademark in Angola if you plan to place an order to some manufacturer. Trademark squatting is very common in Angola, therefore, the country must be on your list of the most important countries.
Our prices include everything for a straightforward process of registration, from the initial trademark search to the effective registration.The prices do not include any legal defenses in case of oppositions or objections.
3.3 Brand Registration Process in Angola
- Applying for your mark (we pay all the government fees and submit the application)
- Formal examination (if the list of goods/services is correct, if other details are correct)
- Substantial examination (if the mark is unique and registrable)
- Publication (allowing the public and other business to object against the mark registration)
4. Angola Trademark Registration: Required documents
4.1 Documents required for filing a mark
- Copy of Certificate of Incorporation (notarised and legalized, translated into Portuguese) for companies or a copy of passport for individuals. Please note that in 2022 ID cards are no longer accepted.
- Power of Attorney (legalized by the Angolan consulate and translated into Portuguese), only a scan is required.
5. Other process details
5.1 Angola first to use or first to file?
This is a first to file country, which means that whoever filed a trademark first will own it, even if someone else used it before.
A registered trademark in Angola is valid for 10 years from the date of registration. If a mark is not used for 3 years continuously, it may be cancelled. The trademark owner must use the trademark in the same form as that in its certificate.
5.2 How long does the process take in Angola?
The entire process in Angola takes 18-24 months provided that there are no problems during the examination and publication stages. That's the average time required to register your mark.
6. What are the benefits of owning a trademark?
6.1 What means to own a mark
You have an ownership confirmation and the mark becomes a point of value collection, meaning that whatever you invest into your brand or into its reputation will not disappear, but will ""stick"" to your trademark. Getting a registration will seal your ownership over this value.
That's similar to buying a land lot to build a house. Would you like to build a house on a land lot that's not even yours? Of course not. Ownership matters.
6.2 What can you do with a registered mark?
When you register your trademark in Angola, you’ll be able to:
1. Take legal action against anyone who uses your brand without your permission, including counterfeiters
2. Put the ® symbol next to your brand - to show that it’s yours and warn others against using it
3. Sell and license your brand
7. Why Bonamark?
Bonamark takes care of more parts of the process than any other company out there. We are not here to just file anything we receive from you.
We are here to check everything, prepare the document to avoid the common objections, enhance your product list for the optimal scope of protection and make sure that you don't have to pay extra and spend more time than you wish.
In Angola we filed thousands of marks since 2016 and work with the most experienced attorneys in this country. We take full responsibility for your success and make sure that everything is done according to your instructions.
Bonamark is one of the most valued trademark registration companies with 4.9/5 rating.
8. After TM registration
8.1 Trademark Certificate
A trademark is registered for 10 years and a digital or hard copy certificate is issued. An example is attached below
8.2 Use of ® and TM, SM
Once your mark is registered, you can use the ® symbol after your trademark. If your mark is not registered, you may use a TM sign but it will give you no common law rights.
8.3 Trademark Validity in Angola
A registered trademark in Angola is valid for 10 years from the date of application. The mark can be renewed for periods of 10 years.
You must use the mark in Angola as you registered it. If you don't use your mark for 3 consecutive years, the mark will become vulnerable to cancellations and others will be able to cancel it if they decide to start this legal procedure.
In most countries, you will not lose a mark automatically if you don't use it. Notable exclusions are the USA, Mexico, the Philippines where you must submit a Declaration of Use every 3-5 years.
8.4 Competitors and similar marks
The Trademark Office might refuse any similar mark for similar products, but we recommend getting a Trademark Watch in order to track any similar marks independently. This way you will be able to spot any similar marks and submit an opposition during their publication stage in order to prevent those marks from registering.
8.5 How to maintain your mark after registration?
1.You have an obligation to use the mark in commerce. If you stop using the mark for 3 consecutive years your mark might be cancelled by anyone who starts the cancellation process
2. You must keep your details up to date, if the name of your company was changed you should submit the change at the Trademark Office, the same applies to the address. Otherwise, there might be difficulties when you have to enforce your mark and if you decide to sell it.
3. We offer Change of Address and Change of Name services and will help you to keep your details up to date.
4. Keep your trademark certificate safe. You don’t want to lose it.
Official Trademark Office in Angola
- Name of Office: Angolan Institute of Industrial Property (IAPI)
- Address: Rua do MAT, Complexo Administrativo Clássicos do Talatona, Edifício 4, 6.º andar, Luanda, Angola
- Phone number: (244) 946 214 949; (244) 925 693 091
Our local intellectual property IP attorneys will prepare and file your trademark for registration in the country, via the Angolan trademark office. Trademarks are filed at the Angolan Institute of Industrial Property (IAPI) , Angola uses the "first-to-file" policy. No evidence of use is required upon filing of a trademark application. However, the Angolan trademark law protects unregistered trademarks if the mark is recognised as a well-known mark in Angola.
Angola has been a member of WIPO since 1985.
Registering the brand in Angola is highly advisable if you plan to sell in this market within the next 3-5 years. Angolan Institute of Industrial Property (IAPI) only accepts documents submitted in Portuguese language