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Louboutin may lose trademark on red-soled stilletto heels
15
Feb '18
Courtesy: Christian Louboutin
Courtesy: Christian Louboutin
French designer Christian Louboutin may lose the right to trademark his red-soled stilletto heels after an advocate general at the European Court of Justice said the trademark on ‘the colour red (Pantone 18 1663TP) applied to the sole of a shoe’ may be invalid as it combines colour and shape. At the centre of the argument is whether ‘shape’ includes colour.

If it does, the trademark can be ruled invalid. That could see copycat red soled shoes mushroom across the world, causing significant damage to Louboutin's high-end reputation, top media outlets in Europe reported.

“A trademark combining colour and shape may be refused or declared invalid on the grounds set out under EU trademark law,” the court said in a statement.

Louboutin previously won a battle against rival luxury fashion house Yves Saint Laurent in a US federal appeals court, allowing him to protect his red soles as a source-identifying trademark.

The court's advocate general Maciej Szpunar said that the colour red could not be considered apart from the shape of the sole, with shapes not usually protected under European Union trade mark law.

The French designer is locked in a court battle in the Netherlands to stop Dutch high street chain Van Haren from selling copycat versions of his shoes, introduced in 2012.

The district court in The Hague had ordered Van Haren to stop producing its shoes with red soles, but the company appealed against that decision and in 2014 the case was referred to the European Court of Justice for clarification. (DS)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India


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