Company name in App store without an 'Inc', 'LLC', etc.?

Ideas and discussion about publishing and distributing your games

Post » Wed Mar 25, 2015 12:42 am

My partner and I would like to enroll in the Apple developer program as a company, mainly so that our desired "identity" is displayed as the seller/publisher rather than an individual's name. Accordingly, we have decided to form an LLC.

My concern: LLC requirements dictate that the company name must contain the text "LLC" or a similar text identifying it as a company. From a branding standpoint, I don't like how the LLC looks next to our company name, and I wouldn't want it to be displayed. Assuming our official legal name is "Cool Games LLC", I'd rather have the app page read something like "Bird Racer by Cool Games", excluding the LLC part.

I've seen several app pages on the store which do not contain this "LLC", "Inc." etc. How can I do the same?

If it isn't obvious already, I am VERY new to this. I appreciate all the advice and info I can get.

Thanks,

Dalal
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Post » Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:53 pm

So I found this on the Apple developer website:

If you have enrolled in the Apple Developer Program as a company, you can specify what you want to use as your company name. In the store, the “company name” is used prominently for navigation and to group your apps. Your legal entity name appears as the “seller” of your apps.

From: https://developer.apple.com/library/ios ... Steps.html

It explains some of what I'm seeing. But I'm still pretty unsure whether I should go through with this LLC. If anyone has any more advice to offer, I'd really appreciate it. Has anyone else enrolled in the dev programs as a company?
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Post » Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:25 am

Hey,

1. If your company is an LLC then you should put it there. Missing this could be a misleading naming that could make you vulnerable to lawsuits.

2. From a user perspesctive: Nobody cares. Really nobody. Ask some people on the street or friends if the wooundn't download the game if they are unsure about if you are an LLC or not.

3. I, as an business-active individual I used to show this: PHANTASY-NAME + BY + REAL NAME. Now I even dropped the PHANTASY part to keep it short on the stores. I asked a lot of people in general what they think about company names in app stores. Most didn't care but if there was a slight influence then one of these two points were named:
- they already now the company like "ubisoft" and expect quality from that
- Name of one single real person where they expect this to be an indie game / one man show (some like that)

*sure this is not representative

Overall/IMHO:
Put LLC and concentrate on making a good game ;-) Don't spend hours of finding some forum post that talk about something where you might be able to crop your name. I am pritty sure you want your game to be available world wide so I would always go for the most strict/safest version and that is in your case having LLC. This is no legal advice.

Cheers,
Marco
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Post » Sat Mar 28, 2015 8:11 pm

Thanks for the reply!

I agree with all your points, but there's a possibility here that I just found out. There is something called a DBA (or doing-business-as) name. Perhaps it would be appropriate to register a DBA name without the LLC, then I can safely show it as the company name in the app store - and the seller name would still be my full legal name with the LLC.

Ugh, it's all a bit confusing. But I think you're right, that users don't really care too much. It's more from a branding standpoint. Like how Scirra would rather display their name as Scirra in trailers and all, rather than Scirra Ltd. It would be Construct 2 by Scirra, not Construct 2 by Scirra Ltd. The former looks and sounds better.
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Post » Tue Sep 27, 2016 8:50 pm

I have the same concern, that "LLC" may not look cool. @MACPK 's answer is a great answer! Thank you.
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Post » Thu Sep 29, 2016 7:05 pm

Dalal wrote:

I've seen several app pages on the store which do not contain this "LLC", "Inc." etc. How can I do the same?

If it isn't obvious already, I am VERY new to this. I appreciate all the advice and info I can get.

Thanks,

Dalal



Why dont you ask apple support? they have their own rules, if you hide something, they will reject your app instantly, they have a big concern around privacy issues, you hiding your LLC extension for them will look weird. Better read their submission terms, i know they have 100 pages of it, but u have to do it in the end, if you want to do business with them. Plus having LLC at the end only confirms your a legit developer, and not some indie game developer that maybe will update their software products or not. Many game developers started as an LLC and then upgraded to something else when they got bigger. LLC at end of your company name is not that bad from my point of view. Its not something you have to concern about now. No one downloads your game because you have or dont have a .LLC at the end of your companies name. You can choose not to add the LLC to public, many companies dont show it publicly the extension (ie. EA (real name : Electronic Arts Inc), Unreal Engine (.Inc), Scirra (.LTD) etc). The business extension you have to show it to Apple or on your profile/ terms and condition for legal reasons but not necessarily as your logo/ name that represents you.

For example i have also registered one Limited, but i dont show the LTD so nobody complained thus far about it.
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Post » Wed Oct 12, 2016 6:54 am

Here's my two cents for what it's worth, when you're dealing with the 'legal' ramifications of setting up a business be it single ownership, partnership or in your case an LLC, or and INC. and you need guidance, get it from an attorney. It's in your own best interest to have your business information and the information required by the various entities where you want to distribute to be checked by an attorney to make sure that you have all of your 'I's and 'T's dotted and crossed. An attorney can guide you as to the exact requirements of these various entities requirements specially if you don't fully understand the information they have provided. Remember the cardinal rule of business is that if it's a large entity like Google or Apple or Windows, someone with a legal degree has reviewed what they have published on their sites to the people who want to use their services and you should use one too, no matter how small you are to make sure you are both covered and your interests are protected.
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Post » Thu Oct 13, 2016 5:43 pm

While it wouldn't hurt to speak to a lawyer about it, in the US a company's legal name is not necessarily the name they do business as: https://www.entrepreneur.com/encycloped ... ess-as-dba

So, in the US "Company, LLC" can do business as "Company" without the LLC, or with a different name entirely. For example, Apple's full company name is "Apple Inc." and they do business as just "Apple." Google handled their name much the same way until shuttling everything under subsidiaries of "Alphabet Inc." to serve as a tax shelter. Another example may be a contractor named "John Smith," who does business as "Smith Contracting" and doesn't have an LLC/Inc/etc to operate under.
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Post » Mon Oct 24, 2016 7:35 am

Not sure if the OP is still looking for an answer... I see posts from this month and I have the answer, so I am going to reply. Also for future reference, you should try google.

You're looking for a trade name

"A trade name is generally considered the name a business uses for advertising and sales purposes that is different from the legal name in its articles of incorporation or other organizing documents. A trade name can also be referred to as a “Fictitious Name” or a “Doing Business As” (DBA). Examples of trade names are the use of the name "Kodak" by the company whose legal name is “Eastman Kodak Company” or “McDonald’s” by the company whose legal name is “McDonald's Corporation.” A trade name may not include Inc., LLC, Corp. or similar legal endings. Although a trade name may sometimes also be a trademark, a trade name is not, in itself, a form of intellectual property."
From - http://www.invention-protection.com/ip/publications/docs/Legal_Name_Trade_Name_Trademark.html
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Post » Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:03 pm

MACPK wrote:This is no legal advice.


Lol. Best part. We use Ltd. though since we are founded in Canada.
https://www.ravenheart.ca/home
Company name changed to avoid Facebook-type shenanigans

"Someone once told me I bite off more than I can chew...

I told them I would rather choke on greatness than nibble on mediocrity."
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