Indian Trade Mark Statistics for August 2017 (Fourth Week), Emoji Burger Trade Mark, Puma Trade Mark Infringement, India Post and Paytm in a legal tiff over the use of the word ‘Postcard’, Gobindhobog Rice of West Bengal gets GI registration, and more brought to you by Trade Mark Attorneys at BananaIP (BIP) Counsels.
TRADE MARK QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” – Jeff Bass
INDIAN TRADE MARK STATISTICS
The productivity of the Indian Trade Mark Office has been dramatically high compared to the previous week’s status. The total number of applications examined increased by seventeen percent (17%). The total number of applications published in the trademark journal increased by seventy-five percent (75%). The number of registrations granted also increased by one hundred and thirty-nine percent (139%).
|Change in %
|Total Trademark applications examined by Trademark Office
|An increase of 17%
|Total applications disposed through show cause hearings
|A decrease of 8 %
|Total applications published in the trademark journal
|An increase of 75%
|Total registrations granted
|An increase of 139 %
|Total hearing notices issued
|An increase of 17 %
|Total renewal notices issued
|A decrease of 17%
Total number of New applications received
INTERESTING TRADE MARKS
Emoji Burger LTD, a New York based restaurant has been granted registration for the mark ‘Emoji Burger’ bearing Application number 87183030 on 16th May 2017. The mark has been granted registration under class 43, primarily for restaurant services. It is interesting to note that a lot of applications have been applied for with the term ‘Moji’ in some form or another at the USPTO, e.g. PETMOJI, TRUMPMOJI, EMOJIBALMS, EMOJI BANDAGES, and EMOJI CARDS.
INDIAN TRADE MARK UPDATES
Puma Se vs Nikhil Thermoplast: Trade Mark Infringement, Dilution and Passing Off
Puma Se (Plaintiff), a well-known German Footwear Multinational Company, filed a trade mark infringement suit before the Delhi High Court for restraining Nikhil Thermoplast (Defendant) from manufacturing, trading, selling, marketing, offering for sale or dealing in any other way, in any goods including clothing, footwear, headwear and/or any other related goods under the Form Strip mark/logo or any other mark/logo which is deceptively similar to the Plaintiff’s mark PUMA and Form Strip logo which may amount to infringement of the Plaintiff’s registered trademarks. Plaintiffs’ brand PUMA is a registered trademark and one of the world’s leading sports brands. It has been averred in the suit that the Plaintiff created and adopted a distinctive Form Strip logo in 1956 which appears on the shoes manufactured/marketed and sold by the Plaintiff globally including in India. It has also been averred that the Form Strip logo is registered in Class 25 under the Trademarks Act, 1999. In August 2015, the Plaintiff came across the Defendant’s products, i.e., footwear, under the mark ROCK-STEP using a device/logo identical to Plaintiffs’ Form Strip logo. The Plaintiff has stated that the use of the impugned logo by the Defendant in respect of identical goods of the Plaintiff amounts to a dilution of the Plaintiffs’ well-known trademark. The Defendant did not appear before the court and did not file a written statement in response. On perusal of the evidence and after hearing the Plaintiffs’ arguments, the Court opined that due to extensive use over a substantial period of time, the Plaintiffs’ PUMA mark along with the Form Strip Logo has acquired reputation and goodwill. The Court further opined that the use of the impugned mark by the Defendant is bound to cause incalculable loss of reputation and loss of sales to the Plaintiff. The Court, therefore, granted a permanent injunction in favor of the Plaintiff.
India Post and Paytm in a legal spat over the use of the word ‘Postcard”
The Department of Posts, Government of India has sent a legal notice to Paytm, an Indian electronic payment and e-commerce brand over the unauthorized use of the term ‘Postcard”. Earlier this year Paytm had launched ‘Paytm Postcards’, a digital version of gifting money with customized messages on several occasions. The notice states that only India Post has the exclusive right over the word ‘Postcard’ under the Indian Post Office (IPO) Act Rules and Regulations.
INTERNATIONAL TRADE MARK UPDATES
General Mills loses trademark battle
An American multinational consumer food brand, General Mills’ application to trademark the yellow background color on boxes of its Cheerio’s cereal has been turned down by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board on the ground that the mark is not distinctive in nature. The Company had applied for the trade mark in September 2015. The Board ruled that the Company failed to prove that the consumers associate the yellow color with the breakfast cereal, and stated that “the customers are more likely to view yellow packaging simply as eye-catching ornamentation customarily used for the packaging of breakfast cereals generally”.
TRADE MARK LICENSING UPDATES
Geronimo Stilton merchandise soon to hit Indian Stores
Geronimo Stilton, one of the best-selling children’s book series will be soon reaching Indian Stores in the form of different merchandize. Brand Monk Licensing (BML), a Mumbai based licensing company has signed an exclusive deal with Atlantyca Entertainment, the company that manages the brand rights of Geronimo, to launch various products ranging from bags, collectibles, back to school products and board games. The title character in the book series is a talking mouse which became very popular among the children in India. The merchandise is said to launch this November and the products will be available across online and offline stores and also via school distribution.
GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATION UPDATES
Gobindhobog Rice of West Bengal gets Geographical Indication (GI) registration
The specialty of Bardhaman district of West Bengal, the Gobindobhog rice has now acquired Geographical Indication (GI) registration. The region of Bardhaman is popularly known as the Rice bowl of Bengal. Gobindobhog is a non-basmati indigenous, aromatic rice of West Bengal which is being cultivated in the state for last 300 years. It is a short grain, white, aromatic, sticky rice having a sweet buttery flavor. The State Government had applied for the GI registration on August 24, 2015.
BIP TIP OF THE WEEK
Well Known Trade Mark Recognition
Companies and Brand Owners that have been in business for more than ten years, and whose products have acquired distinctiveness among the consumers must consider filing for recognition of their marks as a well-known mark before the Indian Trade Mark Office. If the mark is recognized and listed as a well-known mark, the company will be able to not only prevent registration of similar marks, but will also save substantial amount of money that is now being spent on oppositions.
Author: BIP Trade Mark Attorneys
BIP’s Trade Mark Attorneys are among the leading experts in the field. They work with clients such as PEPS, Dharma Productions, Essilor, Samsung and IIT, Bombay, with respect to trade mark filing, prosecution, registration, management, licensing, franchising, merchandizing and strategy.
The weekly trade mark news initiative is a part of their pro bono work, and is aimed at spreading trade mark awareness. You are free to share the news with appropriate attribution and backlink to the source.
If you have any questions, you may write to BIP’s Trade Mark Attorneys – [email protected].