- A European court has favored Huawei in a battle between Huawei and Chanel over logo trademarks.
- Chanel noted that its iconic logo in the upper left was chosen by Huawei for its own logo in the upper right.
- The court said: “The figurative marks in question are not similar.” Chanel had the opportunity to appeal.
For brand identity, nothing is more important than your logo. Famous logos can not only indicate the status of your brand, they can also become cultural touchstones. We’ve seen this with logos from brands as diverse as Coca-Cola, Nintendo, and even FedEx.
Luxury companies are particularly defensive when it comes to branding. If anyone could just slap a design icon on their products, luxury companies couldn’t charge exorbitant prices for their otherwise simple goods, could they?
Case in point: a lawsuit over logos between Huawei and Chanel recently ended in the EU (via Reuters). The focus of the fight was the iconic logo of the luxury brand Chanel (see picture above left). Chanel accused Huawei of choosing this logo for itself, as can be seen in the pictured image on the right.
See also: Did smartphones get much more expensive in 2020? Let’s look at the numbers.
Now you might be thinking, “Wow, these logos don’t look the same.” If so, you are in the same boat as a tribunal of EU judges who thought the same thing.
“The figurative marks in question are not similar,” said the judge’s court.
Chanel tried to argue that the similarity is clear if you rotate the Huawei logo so it is on its side and then really use your imagination. The judges did not buy this argument.
“The marks must be compared as applied for and registered without changing their orientation,” said the judges.
Indeed, this is the second time that Huawei and Chanel have litigated in EU courts. The first time Chanel lost too. Unfortunately, Chanel still has a chance to appeal this judgment, which would then go to the EU Court of Justice, the highest in the country.
Or it could just stop.