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Gucci loses trademark appeal

Gucci has lost its challenge against an individual looking to trademark his own logo for a range of clothing.

The trade mark application, submitted by Luke Connelly, was opposed by the Italian fashion house earlier this autumn on the grounds that the logo was too similar to the interlocking GG logo held under trademark by Gucci.

Gucci claimed there was a notable visual link between the two trademarks and it would offer an “unfair advantage” to Connelly, who submitted the trademark application to use the logo for clothing.

It was also claimed that “Gucci’s reputation may suffer damage by association with a non-luxury or low cost fashion brand.”

But the hearing officer rejected Gucci’s claim on the grounds that the two logos were “visually similar only to a very low degree.”
Gucci was ordered to pay £400 towards Connelly’s legal expenses, as he represented himself.

Gucci trademark appeal

Gucci appealed a UK trademark application on the grounds that the logo (left) was too similar to its own (right).

Lee Curtis, partner at trade mark attorney firm Harrison Goddard Foote, told Drapers that Gucci had been “quite unlucky” in this decision.

“Although decisions of this nature do very much turn on a hearing officer’s personal interpretation of a mark, I find the decision slightly surprising,” he said. “Taking into account imperfect recollection and the fact that the trade marks would rarely be seen side by side, I am slightly surprised the hearing officer did not find that the trade marks would be associated.”

“Gucci can appeal this decision either to the high court or to the so-called appointed person and it will be interesting to see if they feel that they have genuine grounds for appeal.”

This is not the first time that Gucci has entered into legal proceedings over copyright issues. In May this year, the company lost a four year battle with fashion brand Guess, from which it had been seeking $221m (£138m) damages on the grounds of trademark infringement, counterfeiting and unfair competition.

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