16 Mar 2014

Tom Tom accused of playing games

1:36 pm on 16 March 2014

A Wellington businesswoman has accused a Dutch GPS company of playing for time in a trademark dispute.

Gaylene Hosking, of Tom Tom Communications, has twice challenged the right of the other firm to sell its GPS devices in New Zealand under the same name.

The Intellectual Property Office told the Dutch firm in 2008 that the names were too similar, and Ms Hosking successfully challenged its right to the name in 2011, when the Dutch Tom Tom withdrew its application.

But it reapplied within weeks, forcing Ms Hosking into another legal challenge.

She says the Dutch firm was due to file a response last month, but got an extension just two days before the filing deadline, citing a change of lawyer, and then sought another a month later.

Ms Hosking says the company has always backed away before a definitive ruling, whilst continuing to sell its devices, and the latest delay smacks of game-playing.