Trademark infringement and unfair competition

With judgment no 6095/2013, published on 2 May 2013, the Court of Milan fully dismissed the infringement and unfair competition claims brought by Gucci against Guess. Gucci accused Guess of imitating some of the most famous trademarks owned by the Florence maison (i.e. the word ‘Gucci’ in italics, the ‘G’ in italics, the two opposed ‘G’s’, the ‘diamond pattern’ consisting of the ‘G’ and the lozenge pattern, the squared ‘G’, the green-red-green-striped ribbon, and the ‘Flora’ pattern). A number of Guess’s bags, shoes and other accessories were also disputed under unfair competition claims.

The Court dismissed Gucci trademark infringement claims, mainly due to: (i) the graphic differences between the signs, as to the font, thickness and inclination of the letters; and (ii) the visible presence on all the defendant’s products of the well-known trademark ‘Guess’ that was able to avoid any confusion for the ‘particularly observant and circumspect’ consumer.

The Court also discarded another of Gucci’s claims, concerning the imitation of its ‘diamond pattern’ trademarks (Italian trademark no. 876580 and Community trademark no. 2751535), allegedly replicated by Guess on its bags and accessories…

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