Christian Louboutin, the French fashion designer and man behind the Louboutin shoe, has been victorious in a recent court battle concerning the famous red sole that characterises this shoe.
The red sole of the Louboutin shoe has become symbolic of the Louboutin brand. The shoes are loved the world over, despite their premium price tag, and are often spotted on celebrities.
The complaint started in the Netherlands after the French designer attempted to prevent a Dutch fashion chain, known as Van Haren, from selling their version of red soled high heel shoes. Van Haren fought back, challenging Louboutin's trade mark for high heeled shoes depicting a red sole. Van Haren appeared to be successful at first after the Advocate General, in the District Court of the Hague, stated that Louboutin were trying to protect the red sole in relation to a specific shape inferring that their mark could potentially be invalid under Article 3(1)(iii).
It has recently emerged, however, after the case was transferred to the EU's top Court, that the Judges departed from the Advocate General's prior decision in coming to their judgement that the shape of the Louboutin shoe does not form part of the mark, it is merely intended to show the positioning of the red colour.
The case will be referred back to the District Court of the Hague where it is expected they will uphold the European Court of Justice's decision. A great success for Louboutin.Posted by: in: News, Trade Marks