Thom Browne was the target of an Adidas trademark infringement case that was dropped on Thursday. Adidas had claimed that Thom Browne had utilized its iconic “three stripes” insignia without its consent.
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Facts of the Lawsuit
According to Bloomberg Law, the 8-teamed jury found in favor of Thom Browne after it was challenged by Adidas for $7.8 million in 2021 over allegations that it “imitate[d]” Adidas’ iconic three-stripe emblem and design.
The “Four-Bar Signature” ribbons pattern by Browne and the company’s “Grosgrain Signature”—a red, white, and blue line sequence of phases at the center of the lawsuit, as per CNN. Browne’s team claimed in legal papers that the Grosgrain Signature displayed five stripes, but Adidas defense attorneys claimed it only had three, as per CNN.
Robert Maldonado, an attorney for Thom Browne, asserted during closing statements on Thursday that Adidas “does not own stripes.”
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The “Three-Bar Signature” is a three-striped pattern that the Browne brand started offering around 2005. As per CNN, which cited court records, once Adidas approached the business about the pattern roughly two years later Thom Browne agreed to refrain from using it. After then, in 2008 and 2009, the “Four-Bar Signature” appearance was made accessible. Adidas claimed that it wasn’t until Thom Browne applied to trademark the “Grosgrain Signature” in 2018 that it learned of the potential trademark infringement.
Thom Browne’s usage of stripes on sportswear, according to Adidas, was “likely to generate consumer misunderstanding and confuse the general public.” Since 1949, Adidas has sported its iconic three-stripe design. It has brought legal action against a number of other companies for alleged infringement of trademarks, notably Abercrombie & Fitch in 2005 and Forever 21 in 2017.
The Other Facts of the Lawsuit
The jurors decided for 3 hours during the trial’s brief one-week duration at Manhattan’s Southern District Court.
Adidas has been contacted by reporters for a response. According to a spokeswoman for the firm, it is “displeased with the ruling” and will “diligently defend” its copyrights moving forward.
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The Verdict of the Case
On Thursday, a Manhattan jury ruled that Adidas AG (ADSGn.DE) had failed to establish that the use of stripes on garments by luxury retailer Thom Browne Inc. violated the sportswear giant’s distinctive three-stripe trademarks.
The trial, which started on January 3, was concluded by the jury’s conclusion that the clothing house’s parallel stripes patterns were not likely to encourage consumers to confuse them with Adidas’ goods. Among other things, Thom Browne had contended that the patterns have a different number of stripes.
So, Adidas lost its case brought against Thom Browne.