Corporate

JamboPay in trade name win over rival

Danson Muchemi, founder of Web Tribe, which operates JamboPay during a past interview. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Danson Muchemi, founder of Web Tribe, which operates JamboPay during a past interview. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The founder of JamboPay, the firm that supplies Nairobi County’s e-payments platform, has won a protracted battle against a rival firm over use of its trade name.

High Court judge Farah Amin last week ordered the Registrar of Companies to deregister JamboPay Express Ltd and directed the firm to stop using the trade name “JamboPay.”

Danson Muchemi, the founder of Web Tribe Ltd – operator of payment gateway JamboPay – had moved to court in December 2014 seeking to bar Mombasa businessman Ariff Manji from trading as JamboPay Express, saying the look-alike name infringed on his registered business name.

“It is hereby ordered that the defendant whether through its servants, agents or whosoever be and hereby forbidden from infringing the plaintiff’s trademark by using the name ‘JamboPay’ in any format, not limited to a website, within 28 days,” ordered Justice Amin.

“The registrar of companies is directed to deregister the name ‘JamboPay Express’ within 60 days,” reads the court order dated June 14.
Mr Manji was also slapped with the costs of the suit.

JamboPay, a mobile and online payment gateway, in 2014 bagged a lucrative tender to automate revenue collection for Nairobi County, including parking fees, land rates, and business permits.

The battle for the JamboPay trade name was linked to a botched buyout between Mr Manji and the young techie, according to court documents.

Mr Muchemi told the court that Mr Manji was to buy a 60 per cent stake in his firm, but the deal fell through resulting in the Coast-based businessman setting up a rival firm with a sound alike trade name.

“JamboPay Express’ choice of name was designed to defeat the reasonable consumer’s degree of care,” Muchemi said in an affidavit.

JamboPay Express currently runs an e-payment platform dubbed UmojaPay.

Mr Manji had argued in court that there was consent from Web Tribe to use the name following collapse of their talks with Mr Muchemi.