“B & Device” Trademark Dispute
Recently, the Beijing Intellectual Property Court (Beijing IP Court) accepted an administrative dispute case over the request for invalidation of the trademark “B & Device”.
Dongfang Mingri (Jinjiang) Import and Export Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Dongfang Company) applied for registration of “B & Device” trademark (hereinafter referred to as the disputed trademark), which is to be approved under Class 33 commodities including “alcoholic beverages containing fruit, aperitifs and wine”.
Bentley Motors Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Bentley Company) applied to the National Intellectual Property Administration, the defendant in this case, for invalidation announcement on the grounds that the disputed trademark was obtained through other improper means and constitutes similar trademarks used in similar commodities with Bentley Company’s trademarks such as “宾利”, “B in Wings” and others.
The National Intellectual Property Administration found through inspection that the commodities on which the disputed trademark was used were different from those of Bentley Company in functions and uses (Bentley Company’s “B & Device” used on “automobiles” and other commodities), and thus did not constitute similar trademarks used in the same or similar commodities. The evidence submitted by Bentley Company was insufficient to prove that Bentley Company had used the high-reputation trademarks such as “Bentley” in commodities such as “wine and alcoholic beverages containing fruit” before the application date of the trademark in dispute. Therefore, the administration did not support the claim that the registration of the trademark in dispute has damaged the rights and interests of Bentley Company.
The administration also found that Dongfang Company had applied for many trademarks which were the same or similar to other well-known trademarks whose intention and design were not reasonably explained. Therefore, Dongfang Company obviously had the intention of feigning as famous brand, competing unfairly or seeking illegal interests. The registration of the trademark in dispute constitutes the case of “obtaining registration by other improper means’. Accordingly, the trademark in dispute shall be declared invalid.
Dongfang Company refused to accept the decision and filed an administrative lawsuit with Beijing Intellectual Property Court.
At present, the case is under further trial.
August 23, 2019
Source: Beijing Intellectual Property Court
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