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EUIPO stuffs McDonalds and cancels ‘Big Mac’ trade mark

Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 22 January 2019

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After taking on small fry Supermac’s, McDonalds have suffered a major defeat at the EUIPO who have cancelled their ‘Big Mac’ mark.

The dispute started when Irish fast food chain, Supermac’s, decided to expand in the UK and EU in 2015. The Irish company was founded in 1978 and has 100 restaurants around Ireland.

McDonalds opposed Supermac’s EU application with no less that 41 pages explaining how it was too similar to their own ‘Big Mac’ mark.

In response in April 2017, Supermac made an application to the EU Intellectual Property Office to cancel McDonalds ‘Mc’ and ‘Big Mac’ marks and accusing them of registering names and not using them to restrict the market.

Even though McDonalds provided evidence to show EU wide use, the EU IPO said that this was ‘insufficient’. It was therefore held that McDonalds had failed to prove ‘genuine use’ and therefore their mark has been cancelled with immediate effect.

Yet another David and Goliath case, with the little man triumphing. However, this matter may not be over as McDonalds does have the right to appeal.

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