Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Gucci Loses 7 Trademarks to Guess in Latest Legal Ruling

by Mark J. Miller

Gucci and Guess have been tussling over trademarks for years, but the Italian fashion house took a hit from its American counterpart on its own turf last week.
The Court of Milan turned out an 83-page ruling that “rejected all claims” that Gucci had filed against Guess, according to apress release. Not only that, “the Italian Court has ordered the cancellation of certain of Gucci’s diamond pattern, G logo, and ‘Flora’ pattern trademarks” along with its “rights in a ‘Square G’ logo.” 
This is a big blow to Gucci, which had received “minimal monetary damages and narrow injunctions on a handful of logos” in a similar case against Guess in New York that was decided last year. That “minimal” amount added up to $4.66 million, though Gucci had hoped to make a $120 million payday. This time, Guess scored a victory that allows it to use its famed Quattro G logo pattern without worry of infringing on any trademarks.
"The tactics of Gucci are nothing less than bullying,” said Paul Marciano, CEO of Guess, according to MarketWatch. “Because of their endless resources, Gucci has been forum shopping all over the world to try and stop Guess from expanding its successful accessories business. It's fundamentally wrong and unconscionable. There are global trends that Gucci itself follows as anyone does in fashion; they are no different from Guess in that regard." Marciano went on to say that the legal battles in New York and Milan could have been solved with simple phone calls that Gucci never made to Guess.
Despite the loss, Gucci is ready to push on with more legal wrangling. Fashionista.com reportsthat the Italian company is planning to appeal and has called the ruling “potentially dangerous for the protection of ‘Made in Italy.’”

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