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Forever 21 escapes Puma injunctive relief

In 2016, Puma teamed up with popstar Rihanna to create a range of footwear named FENTY X PUMA. The footwear created in the collaboration included the ‘creeper’, the ‘fur slide’ and the ‘bow slide’. The shoes were successful and, according to HypeBeast, Puma’s sales grew by 3.7% in its first quarter statement of 2016 with their footwear being the main driver of growth.

Puma became aware that high street retailer, Forever 21, was selling footwear strikingly similar to that created under the FENTY X PUMA collaboration. According to IP Magazine, Puma filed a lawsuit against Forever 21 alleging it seeks to “trade on the substantial goodwill of Puma, Rihanna, and the Fenty Shoes”by offering for sale virtually identical footwear designs.

The US District Court of California recently denied Puma’s request for an injunction. District Judge Phillip S Gutierrez reportedly stated that Puma failed to “submit probative, non-speculative evidence that it has lost or is likely to lose customers or goodwill”.  The judgment noted that a party seeking relief must be able to show it has or is likely to suffer harm as a result of the allegedly infringing products if a preliminary injunction is to be granted. Puma’s evidence reportedly consisted of a mere declaration that there has been damage to their brand and reputation.

If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniel & Co. on 0192 281 4000 or legal@mcdanielslaw.com.