When Volkswagen took over Bentley in 1998, it launched a clothing line of its own offering leather jackets at £ 2,400, knitted sweaters at £ 215 and polo shirts at £ 167. From 2000 onwards the wordmark BENTLEY is used for this completely new clothing line. The mentioned clothingcompany approached the car manufacturer offering a license to use the mark. Bentley Motors however does not take that offer. The company even goes as far as to starting a cancellation procedure against the former’s trademark. This claim was denied in 2017.
As a counter-action, the clothing company files suit for a prohibition. The word BENTLEY in the logo being the dominant part, the trademarks are deemed similar and used partly for identical goods. The argument that both trademarks had coexisted for 30 years is also put aside. Competing goods have been offered since 2000 and, due to the cancellation action, there can no longer be any question of peaceful coexistence. The result: a ban on the new line of clothing products from the car maker.trademarks
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