September 06, 2018

A trademark is a design, logo, symbol or a sign which distinguishes the goods and services of one business from another one. You can register a name, logo, slogan, domain name, shape, colour or sound as your distinct trademark with the Commercial Law department, Ministry of Trade and Investment in Nigeria.

Registration of your trademark protects your unique symbol, sign, logo or design from hijack and competitors as your trademark differentiates your goods and services and protects them as well.


  • Applicant(s) full name(s), nationality and address
  • The trademark information: i.e your name, logo, design, symbol, colours or phrase and the class of trademark your goods or service fall under.

Note that there are 45 classes of trademark. Class 1-34 cover goods while Class 35-45 cover services. Registration of a particular trademark under one class is an exclusive protection under that class only. That name or logo is still available for registration under the other 44 classes of trademark. In some cases, businesses protect their trademark in more than 2 classes of trademark.

  • A Power of Attorney signed, with full particulars of name(s), address (es) and nationality of the applicant(s). Full name(s) and capacity of the signatory where applicant is a firm/company.


  1. it is advised to engage an Attorney/Agent in Nigeria, who would file and process the application at the Trademark registry by a power of Attorney/Authorization of Agent Form as the enabling instrument to act for the principal/ Applicant.
  2. After submission of the application for trade mark registration, the Registrar issues an official acknowledgement.
  3. A search is conducted so as to confirm that the trademark is available and fit for registration. If the Registrar finds the trademark acceptable for registration, the applicant will be given a notice of acceptance.
  4. The trade mark application must be advertised in the Nigerian Trademark Journal, and is open to opposition for a period of two (2) months from the date of advertisement.
  5. If there are no objections or oppositions within the specified period or where no objections or oppositions are sustained, the Registrar will issue the applicant a certificate of registration.
  6. When issued, the Registration Certificate will have the date of initial filing of registration
  7. Nigerian trade mark registrations have an initial validity period of seven (7) years, and at the expiration of the initial 7 years becomes renewable for a period of fourteen (14) years. An application for renewal should be made not less than three (3) months from the due date.


You can register your trademark in more than 2 classes of trademark, where your goods and services fall under different classes of trademark.

You can either register your business name or logo as your trademark or you can register both your business name and logo.

You can register your trademark either in black and white or in color. However, if a trademark is coloured, the protection afforded is limited to that color only. If it is plain, registration affords protection to all colours of presentation of the trademark.

The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only, no information contained in this post should be construed as legal advise, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or professional advise from the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer.

This post is protected by intellectual property law and regulations. It may however be shared using appropriate sharing tools provided that our authorship is always acknowledged and this Disclaimer Notice attached.

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Frequently Asked

  • Why must I file Annual Returns?

    It is a mandatory statutory requirement under the Companies and Allied Matters Act to file Annual Returns yearly. 

  • What’s the difference between a business name and an LLC?
    • A business name is a sole proprietorship, usually owned and managed by one individual only. Legally, the sole proprietor and his business are one. It simply means an individual trading with an alias. The sole proprietor is personally liable for all business related obligations.

    • A limited liability company on the other hand is a separate business entity from the individuals that hold its shares and act as directors. Legally, it’s a separate business entity and a person on its own who can transact business, own property separate from its owners and can sue or be sued. 

  • What are the benefits of Registering with SON?
    1. Product traceability in the Nigerian market
    2. Detection of counterfeit products
    3. Barriers to the circulation of substandard goods
    4. The official SON Product Registration Logo and number are displayed on registered products.
  • What is share capital?

    The share capital in a private limited company is the amount of money invested by its owners in exchange for shares of ownership.

  • What is a trademark?

    A trademark can be any word, sign, symbol or graphic that you apply to your company, goods or services to distinguish them from those of your competitors; for example, a brand, product or company name, or logo. The trademark serves as a badge of origin for your business and its brands and products, and can consist of words, logos, slogans, colours and shapes, or a combination of all of these.

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