3.6 Million in damage repaires

New Balance successfully challenged the use of the New Burlon logo in China this spring. The sports brand had placed an N, similar to that of New Balance, on a very similar area on their shoes.

 

The fact that the company had already registered the mark (in bad faith) in 2012, did not soften the blow. The application had been successfully cancelled in 2019, making use of the mark infringing from the start.

In these proceedings, New Burlon refused to disclose any information, which gave reason for the authorities to independently determine the amount of damages.

If China is an important market for your company, check whether any trademarks may have been registered in bad faith. Attack those copycats, ask for disclosure of the books and, if not given, claim a substantially higher fine than usual.

trademarks



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IP quiz Trademarks

Puma is one of the bigger sports and lifestyle brands in the world. The core-business is the design, development and sale of (sports) shoes, (sports) clothing and accessories. In 1960, Puma registered an international trademark for a device designed in 1958: the formstrip. Since then, Puma has registered approximately 90 formstrip trademarks with validity in the Benelux or the European Union. Puma claims that this is a serial mark. Monshoe is a wholesaler of women's shoes and related products. The company designs and develops Monshoe shoes which it largely markets itself. Monshoe sells its women's shoes under the brands Shoecolate and Pearlz. The shoe Shoecolate is offered in various colour combinations. Puma claims that Monshoe infringes its well-known formstrip trademark. Monshoe contradicts this and states that the average consumer will not perceive the device of Monshoe on the sneakers as a trademark. And if the public will recognize a trademark in the decoration, it will not make the connection to Puma. According to Monshoe, the formstrip logo is not a well-known trademark within the meaning of the BVIE and the UMVo. There is no likelihood of confusion because the sign does not or hardly evoke any association with Puma among the public. In light of the above, who is right? Does this constitute decorative use or linking to a well-known trademark?