Willis Raburu to share “Bazuu” Trademark with multi-million company: A first in Kenyan media and cosmetics

In a unique collaboration, popular Kenyan media personality Willis Raburu and L’Oréal East Africa Limited will now share the trademark “Bazu.” This follows a trademark application filed by L’Oréal in February 2023, aiming to use the term for their products. Raburu, who initially registered the trademark on April 13, 2021, under No. 116744, has been synonymous with “Bazu” during his time as the host of Citizen TV’s “10/10” show.

“Bazu” has become a colloquial term in Kenya, representing a wealthy or influential individual. Raburu’s registration covered advertising and telecommunication services under the International Classification of Goods and Services. This limited protection means L’Oréal could register the same trademark for different categories without legal conflict.

Under Kenyan law, trademarks can be registered in 45 different classes, each representing a unique category of goods or services. Raburu’s trademark is specific to advertising and telecommunications, allowing L’Oréal to use “Bazu” for their cosmetic products without overlap. This situation highlights the importance of registering trademarks across all relevant classes to ensure exclusive use.

L’Oréal, which owns popular brands like Nice and Lovely, is expanding its footprint in Kenya. The company recently launched a new education program to support local stylists and entrepreneurs, demonstrating their commitment to the region’s hair care market. This strategic move includes physical masterclasses, webinars, and in-salon training to elevate industry standards and attract young talent.

This partnership marks a significant milestone in the Kenyan entertainment and business landscape, showcasing the evolving nature of trademark use and collaboration between different industries. It underscores the need for comprehensive trademark strategies to fully protect brand identities in today’s competitive market.