Russian Court Protects Swiss Watchmaker’s Trademark
According to RU MARKS, a company that specializes in trademark registration in Russia, Moscow’s Ninth Arbitration Court of Appeal recently ruled against Holmrook Limited, a company based in the British Virgin Islands, which registered the rado.ru domain, identical to a word mark owned by Rado, a Swiss luxury watchmaker. The Ninth Arbitration Court of Appeal has thus upheld the 2011 ruling of the Moscow Arbitration Court of Appeal.
On September 9, 2011, the Moscow Arbitration Court of Appeal requested the cancellation of rado.ru domain registration and ordered the defendant to pay EUR 1,280 (USD 1,570) for the unauthorized use of the trademark ‘rado’, which has the priority date of May 14, 1987 with respect to goods in Class 14 of the Nice Classification (precious metals, goods made of precious metals not included in other classes, jewelry, clocks and watches).
The court ruled the domain, registered in 1999, was confusingly similar to the plaintiff’s trademark, in spite of the fact that Holmrook Limited is not Rado’s competitor in the field of watch manufacturing.
The court ruled that the plaintiff’s trademarks were entitled to protection within Article 10bis of the Paris Convention for Protection of Industrial Property, according to which “all the actions that can cause by any means confusion in respect of companies, products, industrial or trading activities of a competitor are subject to prohibition”.
RU MARKS notes that Holmrook Limited also used to be the owner of the domain names tissot.ru and longines.ru, identical to word marks owned by Tissot and Longines, also luxury Swiss watchmakers. The Russian court ruled against Holmrook in both cases and ordered the defendant to pay EUR 1,280 (USD 1,570) in damages to each company.
Prepared by: Jelena Jankovic
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Source: RU MARKS, a company that specializes in trademark registration in Russia
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