Region: South Africa

Use of acronym KG infringes KURT GEIGER mark

In <i>A&D Spitz (Pty) Limited v Turbek Trading CC</i>, the High Court has ruled that Turbek Trading CC's use of the mark KG amounted to passing off of the well-known acronym KG (Kurt Geiger) and infringement of the registered trademark KG for goods in Class 9. The court ordered that Turbek's KG registrations for goods and services in Class 25 and 35 be removed from the register.

05 June 2008

Application for confirmation of seizure must be served within 10 days

In <i>Minister of Trade and Industry v EL Enterprises</i>, the High Court has set aside an application for confirmation of a seizure conducted on behalf of Unilever PLC on the grounds that the Department of Trade and Industry had failed to serve the application papers on the respondents within the statutory 10-day period after seizing goods without a warrant.

02 June 2008

Crocs bitten back in High Court decision

In <i>Moresport (Pty) Limited v Commissioner for the South African Revenue Service</i>, the High Court of South Africa has set aside a search and seizure warrant issued by a magistrate in respect of 5,015 pairs of alleged counterfeit Crocs beach shoes on the grounds that Crocs Inc had failed to disclose a defence raised by Moresport (Pty) Limited in correspondence with Crocs's attorneys.

24 April 2008

Opening shots at 2010 World Cup goal

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association has filed four suits for infringement of various registered trademarks and designs associated with the 2010 Football World Cup. Among other things, FIFA alleged that the transgressors' trading activities amounted to making undue associations with the event and that they were unlawfully deriving promotional benefits from it.

24 January 2008

Supreme Court of Appeal to hear GAP appeal

The latest chapter in the increasingly acrimonious legal battle between Gap Inc and Kingsgate Clothing over the proprietorship of the trademark GAP in South Africa has now reached the Supreme Court of Appeal. Considering that the court has previously ordered that Kingsgate's GAP marks be expunged for lack of evidence of use, the outcome of the appeal is awaited with interest.

15 November 2007

MCBISCUIT takes the biscuit against McDonald's

The High Court has dismissed McDonald's International Property's appeal based on its 'Mc' or 'Mac'-prefixed marks against a decision refusing the cancellation of the trademark MCBISCUIT. Among other things, the court concluded that McDonald's International Property had established a reputation only in the MCDONALD'S mark and that MCDONALD'S and MCBISCUIT were not confusingly similar.

23 October 2007

BMW succeeds against replacement parts supplier

In <i>Commercial Auto Glass (Pty) Limited v BMW AG</i>, the Supreme Court of Appeal has enjoined Commercial Auto Glass from infringing BMW's registered trademarks. The court found that consumers were likely to interpret the actions of Commercial Auto Glass as representing that the windscreens at issue were genuine BMW parts.

28 September 2007

First '' domain name dispute decided

The adjudicator in the first '' domain name dispute lodged with the South Africa Institute of Intellectual Property Law has refused to order the transfer of the domain name '' to the complainant, Mr Plastic CC. The adjudicator held, among other things, that while Mr Plastic had a reputation under that name, so did the registrant and several other traders.

03 July 2007

BMW Case likely to have impact on comparative advertising law

The South African Supreme Court of Appeal has upheld an appeal by Verimark, a television marketing company, against a decision that it was infringing the BMW logo. The court held that Verimark's use of a BMW car in 'infomercials' for its car polish did not amount to use of the BMW logo as a trademark. The decision is likely to have a significant impact on comparative advertising law in South Africa.

11 June 2007

Consent of all parties necessary for rights transfer to be effective

In <i>Unilever South Africa Ice Cream (Pty) Limited v Jepson</i>, the High Court of South Africa has affirmed that it is trite in South African law that a delegation of rights and obligations may be effected only by agreement between all concerned. In the case at hand, however, the court found that the franchisor had failed to prove consent for some of the franchises involved.

28 March 2007

Unlock unlimited access to all WTR content