Friday, 14 November 2014

Peru snubs TM coexistence agreement, rejects NP300 registration

Nissan Navara NP300
By Resolution No 2005-2014/TPI, INDECOPI -- which serves as an appellate administrative body -- rejected a coexistence agreement filed by Nissan Motor Co in connection with its application to register the alphanumeric mark NP300 for "motor vehicles and parts thereof" in Class 12.  General Motors owned an earlier registered trade mark, N300, for "vehicles and parts thereof" in the same class, but had not opposed Nissan's application.

Chevrolet Move N300
The Peruvian Trade Mark Office considered the two marks to be confusingly similar and rejected Nissan's application. Nissan then appealed to INDECOPI, arguing that several trade marks containing the number 300 already coexisted in Class 12 (these being L300, R-300, T-300 and CROSSMAX CR 300). What's more, Nissan filed a coexistence agreement it had made with General Motors, under which the two car-makers pledged to take all necessary measures to avoid any likelihood of confusion among consumers when using the trade marks N300 and NP300.

INDECOPI dismissed the appeal, referring to the Andean Community Decision 486 on a Common Industrial Property Regime, which requires trade mark law to protect the interests of consumers. Accordingly, even though the parties had entered into an agreement, consumers might be confused when seeing both trade marks since NP300 and N300 both looked and sounded pretty similar. Further, even though both parties said they would take all necessary measures to avoid any likelihood of confusion, they gave no clue as to what specific actions they had in mind.

Source: "Court rejects coexistence agreement between Nissan and GM" by Adriana Barrera (BARLAW - Barrera & Asociados, Lima, Peru), posted on World Trademark Review, 29 October 2014

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