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BRANDING NEWS: Sun Microsystems forces Welsh software provider to rebrand

Purple Sun has rebranded to Epitiro after it was allegedly threatened with legal action from Sun Microsystems because of the use of the word 'sun' in its name.

The American software giant successfully registered 'sun' as its trademark in the UK in 1998 thus giving it a monopoly of the word in the computing/software/IT consulting fields.

Purple Sun, which specialises in Customer Experience Management services, operates in similar categories (according to the Patent Office) to Sun Microsystems but it is not a direct competitor.

Set up in 2000, Purple Sun's name came from the lyrics in Led Zeppelin song, 'The Rover'. Two years later it applied to register the name as a trade mark but was met with opposition from Sun Microsystems and in the last three years it has battled unsuccessfully to use the name.

At one point Purple Sun attempted to register the name exclusively in the field of performance monitoring services for ISPs but Sun Microsystems objected to that as well – it is understood that any company using the word 'sun' in the name and operating in the computing sector is “unacceptable”.

In December last year Purple Sun announced that it would change its name to Epitiro – an Ancient Greek word meaning 'to guard' or 'watch over'. A spokesperson for the company is confident that all due risk assessment has been taken to ensure that no other companies are trading under the same name in its field.

The company has spent almost £70,000 on rebranding activities, including a new logo, website and a complete revamp of the marketing collateral.


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