Clash Of The Titans: Regus Sues WeWork For Trademark Infringement

Regus is suing WeWork for infringing its HQ trademark
  • Regus filed a lawsuit against WeWork for trademark infringement.
  • The lawsuit seeks to defend Regus’ HQ Network trademark, which was filed in September of 1988.
  • WeWork sued Chinese competitor UrWork for the same thing last year.

Bisnow reported earlier today that Regus is suing WeWork for trademark infringement.

“IWG, through two Texas-based subsidiaries, has filed a lawsuit against WeWork in Dallas federal court, claiming WeWork’s new business line, HQ by WeWork, infringes on a 28-year-old trademark registered to HQ Network Systems, which Regus acquired in 2004.

“IWG claims the HQ by WeWork brand could confuse customers because IWG still has a brand called HQ Global Workplaces. That brand operates from the website hq.com, and the HQ brand has existed since the 1970s, the suit claims. The lawsuit claims the name HQ by WeWork could ‘cause confusion and deception in the marketplace.’”

HQ Global Workplaces registered the HQ Network trademark back in September of 1988 covering executive office space and associated services. The trademark registration was issued on March, 1990. In 2004, Regus acquired HQ Global Workplaces an its HQ Network trademark, which is since then licensed to Regus Management.

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In August this year (2018), WeWork launched HQ by WeWork to create a more bespoke offer to medium sized companies that didn’t want to move into the WeWork locations. HQ by WeWork aims to provide medium sized companies with “a private and personalized space”, as well as access to the WeWork network.

Regus is suing WeWork for adopting and using a confusingly similar name and mark (HQ by WeWork) to sell similar or nearly identical goods and services as those identified with the HQ Mark, which could confuse potential clients, according to lawsuit documents.

Funnily enough, WeWork sued a competitor for the exact same thing last year (2017). The coworking giant sued Chinese operator UrWork for trademark infringement when the Chinese company announced plans to expand into the US. WeWork claimed that the “confusingly similar brand (name) would deceive potential customers into believing UrWork’s services are affiliated or sponsored by WeWork”.

Though WeWork won the legal battle against UrWork late last year, forcing UrWork to adopt a new name, Ucommune; this time around it’s Regus who holds the higher ground. HQ has successfully defended its trademark in courts in the past.