Price ads infringe trademarks

Posted: 2 years ago in: Case Study, News, Trademark Dispute, Trademark InfringementPosted By admin

Ads infringe Aldi European trademarks

Can price comparison ads infringe trademarks?

Comparative advertising  – trademark dispute

  • Dunnes Stores showed advertising, displays, and labels comparing prices in Dunnes and Aldi.
  • It used Aldi’s registered European trademarks in showing the comparative prices.
  • Aldi brought its trademark dispute with Dunnes Stores to the High Court, alleging they infringe trademarks.

 Can misleading advertising infringe trademark rights?

  • Aldi alleged Dunnes engaged in misleading commercial practices in an advertising campaign two years ago.
  • Dunnes showed ads in many of its shops.  These compared Aldi’s prices with Dunnes.
  • Aldi alleged that the comparisons were misleading.
  • They alleged Dunnes infringed European trademark rights.

Comparative advertising – lawful or unlawful?

  • It is lawful to provide comparative prices in advertising.
  • But you cannot engage in unlawful comparative advertising.

Judge criticized cavalier attitude

  • The High Court judge, Cregan, felt that Dunnes adopted a cavalier attitude, when it ignored replying to communications from Aldi.
  • He felt that Aldi showed Dunnes had carried out numerous infringements of important intellectual property rights.
  • The extent of this was exacerbated though multi-use in multi-stores across the country.

Judge Cregan granted an injunction to prevent Dunnes infringing Aldi’s trademarks.  Dunnes are considering an appeal.  The court will prepare for a damages hearing, in the event an appeal is not successful.

July 2015

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