Adidas sues Thom Browne for “counterfeiting” of TM tape
The German sportswear company filed the complaint Monday June 28 to United States Court for the Eastern District of New York, a movement reported for the first time by Fashion law.
In the filing, Adidas accused Browne of selling “athletic-style clothing and footwear with two, three or four parallel stripes in a way that is confusing with Adidas’ three stripe branding.”
An “extremely valuable” brand
He further argued that the three-stripe logo had become synonymous with the Adidas brand since he started using it on shoes in 1952 and then on sportswear in 1967.
“Adidas has numerous federal trademark registrations for its famous three-stripe brand for clothing and footwear, many of which are indisputable, and Adidas has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in building its brand in relation to the brand at three bands, ”the complaint said. .
According to Adidas, the allegedly counterfeit sportswear imitates the brand in a way that is likely to “mislead the public as to its source, sponsorship, association or affiliation” and the actions of Thom Browne “caused irreparable harm to the Adidas brand and its three extremely valuable stripes “. Mark”.
To support its point, the company said it has used the three-band mark in its frequent sponsorships and collaborations with musical artists, including Beyoncé Knowles, Kanye West, Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams, Selena Gomez and Snoop Dogg. In addition, she had used the mark as part of her frequent sponsorship of tournaments and athletic organizations, as well as professional athletes and sports teams.
encroachment on the “basic market”
Adidas complained that Thom Browne’s encroachment on Adidas’ core market category was exacerbated by the designer’s partnership with a European football club. Barcelona. He was particularly upset that Thom Browne had promoted his products using images associated with football and even several footballers also sponsored by Adidas, including Lionel Messi.
Adidas further noted that the dispute with Brown dates back to 2018, when Adidas opposed a trademark application filed by Thom Browne in the European Union for a two-stripe design and subsequently entered mediation. . However, this process did not resolve the disagreements between the two parties.
Adidas is notoriously protective of its iconic striped logo and other trademarks and has previously sued others for alleged infringement, including J Crew, Forever 21, Skechers, Juicy Couture, You’re here, Marc Jacobs, Sears, Abercrombie & Fitch, Ralph lauren and Target.
A statement published in the magazine WWD, on behalf of Browne countered that the suit lacked credibility because the designer had used the disputed logo for a number of years without prompting any action from Adidas.
“We believe we are right and we are confident in the outcome of the matter, as we have acted honorably throughout this time,” “[Adidas] consented for 12 years and now they are changing their minds. The court will not allow it. And consumers won’t either. It’s an attempt to use the law illegally, ”said a spokesperson for Thom Browne.
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Adidas, Thom Browne, FC Barcelona, Lionel Messi, J.Crew, Forever 21, Skechers, Juicy Couture, Tesla, Marc Jacobs, Sears, Abercrombie, Ralph Lauren