The Delhi High Court ruled against a Mumbai-based footwear brand on Wednesday, declaring the stylized “H” emblem of France’s Hermès International to be a trademark under the law.
Luxury design company called Hermès claimed that the emblem has been an iconic symbol since 1997. The business discovered that Crimzon Fashion Accessories Pvt Ltd distributed goods that are identical to Hermès’s trademarked goods in December 2022.
According to Hermès, Crimzon can be found on social media and independent e-commerce websites. In response, Crimzon stated that it would have voluntarily stopped using the registered trademark “H ORAN” (Hermès sandals with the “H” insignia) if the French company had requested it in a cease-and-desist notice.
According to the provisions of Section 2(z)(g) of the Trademarks Act, 1999, Justice C. Hari Shankar recognised the “H” logo as a well-known brand. The court used the criteria outlined in Section 11(6) of the Act, including consumer, trader, and dealer awareness and recognition of the trademark; the scope of use and promotional activities; and the registration record, which also serves as a record of enforcement at the national and international levels.
The court ruled that a brand’s reputation need not just be known to relevant segments of the public—in this case, the fashion industry—but also to the wider public.
In an industry where online piracy is weakening, if not completely destroying, such festive trademarks, the order will give well-known trademark protection a huge boost, according to Pravin Anand, Hermès’ International’s attorney.
Leather products, fashion accessories, home decor, jewellery, watches, and ready-to-wear are Hermès’ specialties.