When ‘Walks with Hawks’, based in Cheltenham, was founded in 2001 by Clare and Phil Lott it was as a hobby and rescue centre for rare birds.
Eleven years later the company is a successful and growing business offering members of the public Bird of Prey experiences, Hawk Walks and Owl Encounters.
‘Walks with Hawks’ had not considered the need for a trade mark until a rival company set up calling itself a name almost identical to their own.
“Before the internet we received most of our business through word of mouth, our reputation and traditional business directories and leaflets but in recent years 90% of our business comes from our website,” said Clare Lott, who took over the day-to-day running of the company from her husband in 2009.
“We were in a situation where not only was a competitor ruthlessly attempting to leverage off our good name to confuse potential customers but they were also appearing alongside us in Google searches,” said Clare Lott. “We offer only the only the highest professional standards and care for our birds and were in danger of diluting our brand while these amateur cowboys tried to steal our business.”
Clare contacted Trade Mark Direct and started the process to formally trade mark the company.
“Trade Mark Direct made it so easy. They did all the hard work and have been absolutely fantastic,” she said. “We can’t fault them.”
Within three months, Walks with Hawks was officially registered and they are now planning to contact the other company with a 'Cease and Desist’ letter requiring them to change their name.