Ω is a valid and distinctive trademark, court finds
The Court of Cassation, First Civil Section, has quashed a prior decision of the Court of Appeal of Florence and found that the use of a ladies’ purse clasp in the form of the Greek letter omega – Ω – amounted to valid use of a trademark registration covering this letter (Decision No 14684).
Well-known luxury firm Ferragamo has made use of the Ω mark since 1970 and subsequently registered it with respect to a class of goods comprising ladies’ purses. The fact that the same Ω letter was being used by others, including the well-known Swiss watch producer OMEGA, did not adversely affect the rights claimed by Ferragamo, since such third parties produced goods in a different class from ladies’ purses (and goods considered similar to ladies’ purses).
The Court of Cassation decision represents a departure from decisions issued before the 1992 amendment to the Trademark Law. Those prior decisions either did not acknowledge the validity of trademarks represented by a single letter of the alphabet or found them valid but entitled to a scope of protection restricted to reproduction in identical forms by competitors.
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