adidas Wins Legal Battle for Three Stripes Design

On Wednesday, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in favor of the German athletic goods company stating, “adidas may oppose the registration, as a community mark, of parallel stripes placed on the side of sports shoes.”

A spokeswoman for Adidas told FN on Wednesday: “We welcome today’s decision. We are grateful the court recognized the importance of protecting our valuable trademark. We will continue to protect our trademarks and fight any unlawful behavior.”

According to Footwear News, the case dates back to 2009 when Shoe Branding Europe, a Belgian company, tried to register two parallel marks, equidistant and of the same width, placed on the outside of a sports shoe, with the Office of Harmonization in the Internal Market, EU’s trademark and designs registry.

Of course, adidas opposed the registration by the Belgian firm. However, OHIM found no similarity between adidas’ three stripes and Shoe Branding Europe’s two stripes. Thus, adidas brought the issue to the General Court in Luxembourg which ruled in the Three Stripes’ favor in May of 2015.

Shoe Branding Europe appealed the decision before the Court of Justice but the COJ upheld the General Court’s ruling.

Another trademark victory for one of the big three (Nike, Under Armour, adidas). Do you feel that two stripes is too similar to three? Sound off below.

Source: FN

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