Region: Sweden

Students convicted for selling fake copies of Microsoft software

Two students have been convicted of trademark and copyright infringement by the Stockholm District Court for importing fake copies of Windows 7 and Microsoft Office and selling them through online marketplaces in Sweden and Norway. Among other things, the court held that the students' actions were “in the course of business” and that, therefore, they had an extended obligation to examine the origin and authenticity of the goods.

24 April 2015

Citigroup fails to prevent registration of CITY GROSS marks

The Court of Patent Appeals has held that there was no likelihood of confusion between the word mark CITY GROSS and the device mark CITY GROSS on the one hand, and various CITI device marks on the other. Interestingly, in an earlier case the court had held that there was a likelihood of confusion between the marks CITI and CITY SVERIGE.

23 March 2015

Supreme Court sets high threshold for imposing imprisonment in infringement cases

In <I>Prosecutor General v CS</I>, the Supreme Court has set a high threshold for imposing prison sentences on trademark infringers. Among other things, the court dismissed the prosecutor general’s argument that the nature of trademark infringement as a criminal offence could rebut the presumption against imprisonment under the Criminal Code.

04 December 2014

Norwegian bank prohibited from using 'people' mark

The Court of Appeals has prohibited Norwegian bank Folkia from using its trademark FOLKIA and any other name containing the term '<I>folk</I>' ('people' in English), on the ground that there was a likelihood of confusion with Swedish company Folksam’s mark. Among other things, the court stated that, as short-term loan companies were an object for criticism, Folkia’s use of its mark was detrimental to Folksam.

29 September 2014

Supreme Court rules on 'use' of a trademark

In <I>Mon.Zon v Layher</I>, the Supreme Court of Sweden has considered the scope of the exclusive rights conferred by Article 4 of the Trademark Act. Among other things, the court held that, although Mon.Zon had used Layher’s trademark in relation to identical goods and in the course of trade, there was no risk of harming any of the trademark’s functions. Consequently, Layher could not prevent Mon.Zon from using its trademark.

25 July 2014

Court provides guidance on protection of artistic names in ‘Brothers of Hard Rock' case

The Court of Patent Appeal has held that the trademark BRÖDERNA HÅRDROCK ('The Brothers of Hard Rock') could be registered, despite the existence of real-life 'hard rock brothers'. The court, referring to the Name Act, held that protection of an artist's name relates only to a single designated person; as BRÖDERNA HÅRDROCK referred to two people, the registration of the trademark could not be refused.

25 April 2014

District court awards record damages for lost sales

In 2006 Bringwell Sverige AB had obtained an interim injunction against competitor Cederroth AB. In <i>Cederroth AB v Bringwell Sverige AB</i>, a district court has awarded the highest amount of damages for lost sales ever granted in Sweden - but not to Bringwell. The court granted a total of Skr20 million in damages to Cederroth, because an appeal court had ruled that no infringement had occurred.

13 November 2013

'Hunter' marks for alcoholic beverages held to be confusingly similar

The opposition officer of the Swedish Patent and Registration Office has held that there was a likelihood of confusion between the marks JÄGER and JÄGARÖL for alcoholic beverages. Among other things, the opposition officer found that the marks were conceptually similar, as JÄGER meant 'hunter' in German and JÄGAR was a variant of '<i>jägare</i>', meaning also 'hunter' in Swedish.

28 October 2013

Mars' and Kraft's marks cancelled - but Kraft emerges victorious

In <i>Kraft Foods v Mars Inc</i>, the Court of Appeal has cancelled the registrations for the trademarks M&M'S and M, which belong to chocolate manufacturers Mars and Kraft Foods, respectively. However, the court noted that Kraft had put a different form of the M mark to use in Sweden before Mars’ trademark was registered and, therefore, it had acquired exclusive rights to use its trademark.

09 September 2013

Another win for Apple in WHYPOD dispute

The Patent and Registration Office has cancelled the trademark WHYPOD on the grounds that use of the mark would take unfair advantage of, or be detrimental to, the distinctive character or repute of Apple’s well-known IPOD mark. This decision confirms that it will be difficult for anyone to use a mark containing the element 'pod' for similar goods without Apple’s permission.

10 June 2013

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