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Gucci loses four year legal dispute with Guess

An Italian court has rejected Gucci’s claims that denim label Guess infringed its copyright following a four-year legal dispute.

The claims included trademark infringement, counterfeiting and unfair competition. 

The luxury label had won a first round in the legal battle last year, receiving $4.7m in damages from a New York court, although this was just a fraction of the $221m it was seeking.

But in its second law suit in Milan, the judge has rejected all Gucci’s claims and cancelled its trademarks held on its diamond pattern, G logo and Flora pattern. The court also rejected Gucci’s rights to a ‘square G’ logo.

The judge ruled these patterns and motifs were common throughout fashion designs, and that Guess’ ‘Quattro G’ logo had “nothing to do” with Gucci’s design.

It noted that Guess’s logo already held “remarkable notoriety”, rejecting the possibility that any confusion could arise between the two products.

Paul Marciano, co-chairman and co-chief executive of Guess, said the decision vindicated his brand’s position and described Gucci’s actions as “nothing less than bullying”.

“Because of their endless resources, Gucci has been forum shopping all over the world to try and stop Guess from expanding its successful accessories business,” he said. “It’s fundamentally wrong and unconscionable.

“There are global trends that Gucci itself follows as anyone does in fashion; they are no different from Guess in that regard.  

“In my opinion, the three year battle in New York and four years in Milan was a result of massive and unnecessary litigation that should have been easily resolved with a simple phone call, which Gucci never made.”

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