Budvar may appeal French verdict making “BUD” trademark invalid
České Budějovice /Colmar (France), Dec 5 (ČTK)— Czech brewery Budějovický Budvar is considering whether it will file an appeal to the Supreme Court over the verdict of the French Appellate Court that the “BUD” designation of origin, owned by Budvar, is invalid, Budvar’s spokesman Petr Samec said today.
The French court ruled that the “BUD” trademark cannot be protected as a designation of origin in France, confirming an earlier verdict of a lower-instance court against that Budvar had appealed, brewing group and Budvar’s rival Anheuser-Busch InBev said in a press release today.
The decision strengthens the position in trademarks of Anheuser-Busch InBev in France, the company said.
“The court’s verdict has not taken effect yet. We are now analyzing our chances of success in a possible appeal to the Supreme Court with our lawyers,” Samec said.
Europe’s Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM) had granted the registration for the “BUD” trademark in the entire European Union to AB InBev in June already.
It did so after Budvar lost a dispute over the trademark at an EU court in January this year.
Court disputes over the BUDWEISER trademark have dragged since 1907.
In 2000 to 2012, a total of 173 court disputes and administrative proceedings were closed, of which Budvar won 120 cases. Ten disputes ended in a settlement or a victory of none of the two sides.
The registration of trademarks BUDWEISER and BUDWEISER BUDVAR, owned by Budvar, bans the ABI concern from using its flagship trademark BUDWEISER in almost 70 countries.
Budějovický Budvar was established in 1895 by Czech brewers who had produced beer called Budweiser Bier since the 13th century. Budweiser Bier has been exported from České Budějovice, southern Bohemia, to the USA since at least 1872. Anheuser-Busch introduced its own US trademark Budweiser in 1876.