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Technology & Consumer Electronics Team of the Year: Honeywell International

Last year saw Honeywell International score a crucial court victory in China in a case that was cited as a best practice example by the Quality Brand Protection Committee. David A Cohen, asssistant general counsel and chief trademark counsel, elaborates: “With the success of our enforcement activities, we have seen infringers change their tactics. Whereas they used to copy our marks in total, they are now trying to use variations of our marks in the hope of evading criminal and civil penalties. For the past several years we have been pursuing one such matter – the attempted registration of GALITT, which we believed was confusingly similar to our well-known GARRETT trademarks. Although we lost before the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board and the trial and appellate courts, we pursued this matter up to the Supreme People’s Court (SPC). By providing additional evidence of the fame of our mark and the bad faith of the applicant, we were able to convince the SPC that our GARRETT mark had acquired a high level of fame and distinctiveness, and it decided to reverse all of the decisions by the TRAB, trial court and appellate court by ruling that GALITT was confusingly similar to our GARRETT mark. This was Honeywell’s first win before China’s highest court.”

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Issue 71