Scotsman fights off multinational's domain name claim

Owner of chess site check-mates insurance giant in domain name dispute

A British businessman has won a legal fight with multinational insurance firm CGNU Insurance over the domain name he registered for chess enthusiasts:

Mr Remocker, from Glasgow, was judged by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) to have registered the domain name in good faith and will now be allowed to sell the domain to the highest bidder.

GNU Insurance -- part of CGNU Group after a £20bn merger with Norwich Union in May last year -- took the case to WIPO alleging that Remocker did not rightfully own the domain because it is the name of the firm's real estate business.

Remocker enlisted the help of Demys, a UK company that specialises in selling high-value domain names, to try and sell the domain. After Demys and CGU Insurance were unable to reach an agreement on the price of the name, the Insurance firm took its case to the WIPO.

The battle was a classic case of David and Goliath, according to Remocker. "This is a typical example of a large company trying to use strong-arm tactics to force an asset out of the hands of an individual," he said. "Many others might not have stood up for their rights against such a formidable opponent but I am pleased to have done this and won".

CGNU already owns the domains and A company spokesman said these are sufficient for its UK strategy and the company does not plan to make a new bid for the .com domain. He rejected Remocker's suggestion of bullying tactics and said the company was merely defending its brand identity.

The judge ruling in the case described CGNU's dispute as "ill advised", but agreed that the company had felt that there was genuine threat to its brand.

"We are very happy with the result and with the endorsement of our actions," said Andrew Lothian of Demys.

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