A recent case has emerged between Hendricks Gin and Lidl. Lidl had started putting a gin known a ‘Hampstead gin’ on their shelves following a rebrand. However, gin enthusiasts began to notice the similarities between the product and the infamous Hendricks gin.
Legal action was launched to note that Lidl has breached section 10(3) of the Trade Marks Act 1994.
This section notes:
“ A person infringes a registered trade mark if he uses in the course of trade[in relation to goods or services,] a sign which—
(a) is identical with or similar to the trade mark,
(b) where the trade mark has a reputation in the United Kingdom and the use of the sign, being without due cause, takes unfair advantage of, or is detrimental to, the distinctive character or the repute of the trade mark.”
A few of the points made by Hendricks Lawyers is that the labelling of the bottle was very similar, even down to the pale colouring; the bottle itself was also made darker to mimic the dark Hendricks gin; the label also included cucumbers, like that of the Hendricks gin bottle.
As a result, it has been alluded by Hendricks Lawyers that there is to be expected a likelihood of confusion between the two products. It has also been stated that Lidl’s brand could benefit from Hendricks goodwill and reputation and therefore could be detrimental to Hendricks brand.
Consequently, a recent interim interdict has been awarded to the owners of Hendricks Gin.
If you are faced with any trade mark issues such as the above, or have any questions regarding trade marks. Please do not hesitate to contact the Trademarkroom team today.