By Maria Sol Porro, Trademarks Lawyer and University Professor.
Last June, the General Court of the European Union (EGC) announced one of its most resounding decisions to date, as it confirmed the nullity of the Adidas Community trademark, consisting of three parallel bands, due to the fact that the German company did not demonstrate the distinctive character of it throughout the territory of the European Union (EU).
The legal battle for the three stripes is part of the dispute that Adidas and the Belgian company, Shoe Branding Europe BVBA, began in 2009, when the latter tried to register their two lines against the European Union. In this case, Adidas objected before de European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) on the grounds that they closely resembled its three parallel bands and, based on this claim, the EUIPO denied registration to the Belgian company on two occasions (2015 and 2016). It is important to remark that Adidas had not proceeded to register its three lines before the EU until this point.
Once this judicial contest was won, Adidas decided to request in December 2013 the registration of the famous three parallel bands as a community trademark before EUIPO, which gave its …Read More