Hasbro hits the free parking spot with Monopoly TM win at UKIPO
Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 17 August 2018« Return to Reading Room
However, it seems that even this family institution is not safe from trade mark challenge as Croation entertainment company Kreativni Dogadaji filed an application to revoke the mark in 2017.
The UK trade mark for ‘Monopoly’ has been registered in respect of board games since 1954, with the actual game first released in 1935 by the Parker Brothers which was then acquired by Hasbro in 1991.
Kreativni claimed that the mark should be revoked from November 1957 based on the rule that a mark should be revoked if it is not used in the five-year period after the mark is registered.
In addition, they also argued that there was no genuine use in the following 5-year periods:
- 2002 to 2007;
- 2007 to 2012;
- 2012 to 2017.
Judi Pike on behalf of the UK Intellectual Property Office considered the case.
In response to this claim, Pike highlighted the date offered by Kreativni was incorrectly calculated and therefore the mark had in fact been used during this time.
This decision was supported by a number of exhibits submitted by Hasbro, including an Argos catalogue which should continued use in all the periods highlighted.
Pike also noted that the annual sales of the game was in the millions, standing at £7.1 million in 2016.
Kreativni also made a claim to suggest that the word ‘Monopoly’ was descriptive of the game and its origin and therefore cannot be a registered trade mark.
Again Pike disagreed with this, stating that Hasbro’s use is sufficient and there is no issues in respect of the word in respect of distinctive character.
The application for revocation was dismissed and Kreativni was ordered to pay Hasbro’s costs.
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