Kerman & Co successful in registration of colour trade marks on behalf of Wimbledon

June 24, 2016

The colours green and purple have been associated with Wimbledon for well over 100 years. But until recently the Club has had to rely on the tort of passing-off to prevent third parties from piggy-backing on the goodwill of The Championships by using those colours to imply an association with Wimbledon, when no such association exists.

However, on 24th June 2016 Kerman & Co were successful in registering the following colour trade marks (the “Colour Marks”) in the United Kingdom on behalf of The All England Lawn Tennis Club (Championships) Limited (the “Club“):

  1. K00003095405 (vertical green and purple stripe); and
  2. UK00003097108 (horizontal green and purple stripe)

The Colour Marks were registered in the following classes:

Class 16: Printed publication of books, stationery and diaries, all relating to tennis;

Class 25: Tennis skirts; tennis shorts; tennis sweaters; hats, scarves, wrist bands, socks, all being tennis clothing;

Class 38: Telecommunication or broadcasting of, and/or provision of access to, delayed and live tennis related video, audio-visual and audio content online or via means of a global computer network, including content accessible via wireless electronic communication devices; provision of access to information on websites, portals, social media, blogs relating to tennis (including events, event locations, maps, driving and transport directions, statistics and information on performances, all relating to tennis); all the foregoing services available from computer databases, the Internet, via wireless communication networks and via global communication networks; and

Class 41: Producing, organising and staging tennis competitions; provision of tennis facilities; ticketing and event booking services relating to tennis events; provision of hospitality services and packages (entertainment) in relation to tennis events; production of pre-recorded and real-time radio and television coverage of tennis events over the Internet.

For the Club, not only do these provide protection against trade mark infringement, these registrations will also help in strengthening any passing-off cases that the Club may have against infringers.

Zane Shihab and Nick Bitel advised The All England Lawn Tennis Club (Championships) Limited on this matter.

To learn more about the background to this matter, colour trade marks generally and their use in practice, please read the full article.

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