The Madrid System for the International Registration of Marks (popularly known as the Madrid system) is used to protect a brand around the world. The agreement was established in 1891, is governed under the Madrid Agreement (1891) and Madrid Protocol (1989) and is administered by the International Bureau of WIPO in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Madrid system offers a trademark owner the possibility to protect it in several countries ( Members of the Madrid Union) by filing a single application directly to your own office for national or regional brands. The international registration of a trademark has the same effect as a registration or registration of a mark made in each of the countries designated by the applicant. If the trademark office of a designated country does not refuse protection within a specified period, the mark is the same as if it had been registered by that office.
The Madrid system also simplifies greatly the subsequent management of the brand as a single administrative step further changes may register or renew registration. It also facilitates the subsequent designation of other countries.
Video presentation: http://www.wipo.int/multimedia/en/madrid/madrid_spot/index.html
More information: WIPO