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News about trademarks

Trademarks, whether they are strong, beautiful or special, play an important role in our daily lives. All brands have their own story, their own context within which they develop. Investing in the value of a trademark is an important part of a business’s strategy since the value of a trademark or trademarks to a great extent determines the profitability of the organisation and thus its value. With practical situations as a focus, this section sets out all relevant and interesting developments in the field of trademark law.

Is your anti-counterfeiting strategy up to scratch?

26-01-2015

Counterfeit activity is a threat to all modern businesses, affecting their profits, their reputation and, in some cases, the safety of their consumers. But, so persistent is the threat – particularly online – that it can be difficult for companies to know where to start. We set out the answers to some frequently asked questions.

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MONACO can’t be registered for Monaco

26-01-2015

Can ‘Monaco’ be registered as a trademark even if it’s a geographical territory? The answer is yes, if the sign has a distinctive character for the goods and services on which the registration is based. However, the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) has refused to register Monaco as a trademark in respect of some of the goods and services that the territory had applied..

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Trademark resolutions: watch your marks

26-01-2015

Trademark watching is an important tool in the proactive monitoring of registered marks and devices, helping companies to identify and act against infringement and misuse of trademarks in a timely manner. Here are five tips for getting started or revising your current strategy.

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Further progress for foreign trademark owners in China

26-01-2015

Earlier this month, China’s State Administration for Industry and Commerce published its 2014 annual report on IP protection in China. Novagraaf France’s Zhengnan Gong outlines the key findings.

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Back to the Future’s DeLorean in trademark dispute

12-01-2015

From hoverboards to self-drying jackets, the 1980s sci-fi film franchise has gifted the world some of the most memorable images of futuristic inventions. However, it is the retrofitted car-turned-time machine that is currently hitting the headlines.

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Ageing casks are an invaluable tool for spirits producers

12-01-2015

It is an increasingly widespread practice for spirits, and particularly whisky, producers to establish links with prestigious wine-producing estates in order to produce exceptional alcoholic beverages of their own. Marion Pignot examines the IP implications of such an arrangement.

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Caution: misleading letters and false invoices trademark authorities

09-12-2014

Unfortunately, trademark owners are frequently approached by companies that pretend to be an official authority, for example through misleading letters or fake invoices. We would like to point out these malpractices.

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Volvo versus Lovol

09-12-2014

Car manufacturer VOLVO tried to prevent the application of two figurative signs containing the word LOVOL for agricultural machines and vehicles. Volvo argued that the trademarks VOLVO and LOVOL are similar, because of the resemblances between ‘vol’, ‘vo’ and ‘lov’. OHIM, the European trademarks and designs authority, did not agree with VOLVO and in its recent judgments the General..

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The Bimbo Doughnuts case

09-12-2014

The Spanish company Bimbo SA applied for a so-called Community Trademark for BIMBO DOUGHNUTS at OHIM, the European trademarks and designs authority. The holder of the earlier Spanish national trademark DOGHNUTS (sic) was not happy with the application and opposed against it. With success: the application of Bimbo SA was refused. Bimbo SA appealed, but the earlier rulings were upheld by the..

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The Rubik’s Cube shape mark is valid

08-12-2014

The registration of the shape of the Rubik’s Cube as a Community Trademark is valid. The General Court of the European Union (hereafter: the General Court) ruled in favour of the “cube mark” in a dispute between Simba Toys GmbH & Co. KG and the European trademark authority, OHIM. Novagraaf’s Michaël Sumer sets out the background to the dispute.

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