Infringement of Famous Trademarks in Vietnam

There have been numerous notable cases related to the infringement of famous trademarks in Vietnam. A famous trademark in Vietnam is one that is widely known by relevant consumers within the country.

Infringement of Famous Trademarks in Vietnam

What Constitutes Infringement of a Famous Trademark?

According to point d, clause 1, Article 129 of the Intellectual Property Law, infringement of rights to a famous trademark includes:

d) Using a sign identical or similar to a famous trademark, including translated or transliterated versions of the famous trademark, for any goods or services, even if unrelated to the goods or services bearing the famous trademark, if such use is likely to cause confusion about the origin of the goods or create a misleading impression about a relationship between the user of the sign and the owner of the famous trademark.

Thus, infringement of a famous trademark involves unauthorized use of a widely recognized and reputable trademark in the market or using a similar sign that may cause confusion with the famous trademark, resulting in damage or potential confusion for consumers regarding the origin of the goods or services.

Specific Acts Considered as Infringement of a Famous Trademark Include:

  • Using the famous trademark or a part of it on goods or services without the owner’s permission.
  • Producing, trading, or promoting counterfeit goods bearing the famous trademark, causing confusion for consumers and diminishing the trademark’s reputation.
  • Using the famous trademark on unrelated products or services, causing confusion about the relationship between those products and the famous trademark.
  • Advertising or marketing using the famous trademark or similar elements, causing confusion for consumers about the origin or quality of the products or services.

Notable Cases of Famous Trademark Infringement in Vietnam

Hảo Hảo Noodles vs Hảo Hạng Noodles

Acecook Vietnam discovered that Asia Foods’ Hảo Hạng noodles had packaging designs that caused confusion with Hảo Hảo noodles. The design elements, such as the font, noodle bowl image, noodle strands, and main colors, created similarity and confusion. Acecook sued Asia Foods, resulting in a court ruling for Asia Foods to cease the infringement, publicly apologize, and compensate Acecook for legal costs.

“Saigon Beer” Trademark

SABECO accused the Saigon Vietnam Beer Group and its director, Lê Đình Trung, of imitating the “Saigon Beer” trademark. SABECO claimed that the signs on the Saigon Vietnam Beer cans caused confusion with their trademark. The court fined the Saigon Vietnam Beer Group and Lê Đình Trung a substantial amount for industrial property infringement.

ABB Trademark

Two Vietnamese companies, ABB Transformer JSC and ABB Vietnam LLC, used the “ABB” sign in their company names and products, causing confusion with ABB Group’s protected trademark and trade name. This case highlighted the exploitation of the reputation of a famous trademark for profit.

These cases demonstrate that infringement of famous trademarks in Vietnam not only causes damage to the trademark owners but also affects consumer trust. Addressing these violations requires stringent and consistent action from the relevant authorities to protect intellectual property rights.

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