Beauty is in the eye of the trademark holder

The English High Court has ruled in the latest round of a long-running international dispute between Aveda (a member of the Estee Lauder group) and Dabur (an Indian FMCG conglomerate) over Dabur’s use of the brand UVEDA.

In May 2010, Dabur filed a UK trademark application for the trademark DABUR UVEDA. Aveda opposed on the basis of its prior registrations for AVEDA. The hearing officer dismissed the opposition on the basis that UVEDA was not the dominant element of the mark. Aveda appealed to the High Court.

Aveda argued that the hearing officer had failed to correctly apply the guidance of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in the Medion case. In that case, the CJEU ruled that a likelihood of confusion may arise from use of a third party’s averagely distinctive registered trademark (for the same goods and services for which that mark is registered) in combination with a company name or house mark — even if the registered trademark does not determine the overall impression of the composite sign…

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