RMB 8 Million In Damages Against Infringers Of The "Martian In Chinese" Mark That Is Recognized As Well-Known

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Recently, the Guangdong High Court made a second-instance judgment on the trademark infringement and unfair competition dispute case between Martian Kitchenware Co., Ltd. ("Martian")...
China Intellectual Property
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Recently, the Guangdong High Court made a second-instance judgment on the trademark infringement and unfair competition dispute case between Martian Kitchenware Co., Ltd. ("Martian") and Zhongshan Jiamei Electric Technology Co., Ltd. ("Jiamei"), an individual Zhou, Guangzhou Shuaifeng Kitchen Appliance Co., Ltd. ("Shuaifeng"), Shenzhen Leman Kitchen Appliance Co., Ltd. ("Shenzhen Huoxingren"), and Beijing Siyuan Bio Technology Development Co., Ltd. ("Siyuan"). The court found that the defendants' acts constitute trademark infringement and were ordered to immediately stop infringing on Martian's Cited Marks. Zhou, Shuaifeng, Shenzhen Huoxingren, and Siyuan were ordered to compensate Martian a total of RMB 8 million (USD1.10 million), and Jiamei shall bear joint and several liability for compensation within RMB 5 million (USD689,000).

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Cited Marks

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Disputed Marks

The court found that first, since 2015, Martian's "Martian in Chinese" mark has been recognized as a famous brand product in Zhejiang Province and a famous trademark in Zhejiang Province. From revenue to profits, advertising investment, honorary awards, various media reports, etc., it reflects the popularity and influence of the "Martian in Chinese" mark on integrated stove among consumers, which is enough to prove that when the "Martian Pioneer in Chinese" mark was filed, the "Martian in Chinese" mark had reached a well-known status in kitchen appliances, especially integrated stoves.

Second, the defendants argued that the "Martian Pioneer in Chinese" was a registered trademark and did not constitute infringement. The court held that, based on good faith and business morals, even if the defendants use a registered mark, considering well-known mark status provide better, stronger, and wider protection scope, the court can determine whether to recognize the Cited mark as well-known based on the circumstance of this case. The court found that it is necessary to recognize the Cited Mark as well-known mark in order to stop the defendants' infringement activities.

Third, the "Martian Pioneer in Chinese" mark and the distinctive part of other "Martian Pioneer in Chinese" marks constitute a copy of the well-known trademark "Martian in Chinese." Moreover, when comparing the disputed mark with the Martian's Cited Marks, it contains an "M" figure with a circular background that is similar to Martian's trademark and completely contains Martian's trademark. The use of the disputed marks constitutes trademark infringement.

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