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Refusal of “vente-privée” for Veepee

18 November 2019

The French trademark no 13 4 055 655 has been registered since 2014 to designate, in particular, sales promotion for others.

In 2016, the competitor, Showroomprive.com sought cancellation of this trademark due to the generic character of the expression “vente privée” and its lack of distinctive character.

In its decision of 3 October 2019, the Paris Court recognized the distinctive character acquired through use of the trademark “vente-privée”.

Nevertheless, the Court upheld the cancellation action of the trademark – although it is a semi-figurative trademark in colour – for fraudulent filing, considering that:

  • Vente-privee.com may not appropriate generic terms that must “remain available for all economic actors in this field”;
  • especially as “the awareness of the generic character of the term and the intents of appropriation of such term by Vente-privee.com are recognized and even assumed by the leader of the company”.

Choosing a sign for trademark registration can thus raise or generate complex situations, do not hesitate to contact our teams for your projects.

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