Stories of our clients: SailTies, App for sailing enthusiasts

Two sailing enthusiasts, Thomas Guy and Chris Jacobs, have developed an app for fellow sailors, allowing them to capture their experience in one place. SailTies brand has instantly become loved by the sailing community and naturally, its founders have smartly focused on brand protection through trademark registration from the very start! Read the full story of turning a sailing hobby into the beloved app.


Jan Buza

From a hobby to a business plan

The development of the SailTies app has not been a lifelong dream for its founders, instead, it was the shared hobby and experience that led Thomas Guy and Chris Jacobs to this exciting project. 

As explained by Thomas Guy, “Chris and I met in 2018 working together at Cookpad, a recipe social network with 50+ million monthly users. We discovered that we had a shared passion for the ocean and it wasn’t long before we started sailing together. We have since sailed over 3,000 nautical miles together all around Europe, including the UK, Greece, Croatia, Mallorca and Sardinia!”

“It was during our Day Skipper qualification on The Solent, UK, that we came up with the idea for SailTies. We wanted a modern way to capture our week of sailing so we could share it with friends and family and to look back on it when we were off the water. The status quo is the paper log book, but this only lets you write a one sentence summary of your trip and it’s completely separate from photos that you have on your phone. We tried using other tracking apps out there, but with little success due to the nuances of sailing.”

“Chris and I both have 10 years experience building mobile apps and social networks, so we decided to solve the problem ourselves and build the SailTies platform!”

“We launched our beta app in March 2021 to a great response from the sailing community. We’re delighted that our users love the app! Our early adopters have already logged 25,000 miles over 5 continents and we love watching their voyages pop up on the feed - it’s very motivational!”

SailTies: All sailing experience in one place!

We have seen it with numerous successful startup that it is the unfulfilled need that drives the motivation and development of a new business idea. SailTies is no exception to this claim and the perceived lack of a suitable tool to record and share sailing experiences has been shared by the broader sailing community.

“The reason sailors are loving SailTies so much is simple: surprisingly there is no other modern way to capture all of your sailing in one place! Most sailors keep a basic, manual, uninspiring record of their voyages in a paper logbook and store photos separately. Sailors are desperate for an alternative.”

“With the SailTies app, sailors can easily record their voyages using their phone's GPS. Key stats are generated automatically and every member of the crew can add their photos and notes. Voyages and profiles can easily be shared to social media or via a public link and there is an in-app feed for inspiration.”

“Other than the outdated paper log book, our competition includes sailing navigation equipment and sailing racing apps. Neither of these alternatives are suited to capturing all the sailing a sailor does throughout the year, as they are focussed on a specific type of sailing or restricted to a particular vessel. Only SailTies is suited to all types of sailing and boating and grows in value to the user as they record their sailing history onto the platform.”

Protecting what matters most

The early success of SailTies has highlighted the crucial importance of protecting the brand itself. In line with the optimal trademark strategy discussed in our recent blog post, Thomas Guy and Chris Jacobs recognised the vital role of trademark registration from the very start, avoiding potential problems that could hinder their success and growth in the future.

“We received a fantastic response from our audience regarding the SailTies brand. People love the name and the logo. We understand the importance of brand in a world where you need to stand out. So we immediately took steps to protect it.”

Experience with Trama

“Our first step into trademarking was to try doing it ourselves. We soon found ourselves drowning in documents and with time at a premium as it always is with a start-up we wanted to invest all of our energy into SailTies. We looked around at the available options to take this stress out of our hands and Trama seemed reputable and well priced. The team did not disappoint, taking all of the stress and hassle out of trademarking and making the process extremely easy for us with their expert team.”

Our team has registered SailTies trademark on behalf of Thomas and Chris in four jurisdictions, including the UK, the US, the EU and Australia. While Australia is renown for its sailing opportunities, the remaining three jurisdictions are generally recommended for all startups with global ambitions, providing the best value for money. Essentially, it is the combination of the United States, the European Union and the United Kingdom that ensures effective protection in the App Store and across the web.

“The experience with Trama was wonderful! All of our questions were answered quickly and patiently which was particularly appreciated since this was a whole new world to us.”

Jan Buza
Jan Buza

Product Mind

Helped scale portfolio firms for a VC fund

CEMS Prague

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