Thursday, August 04, 2011

Pernod Ricard Suffers Another Setback in its Duel with Bacardi Ltd. Over the U.S. Trademark to Havana Club Rum

(by Shanken News Daily) Pernod Ricard has suffered another setback in its duel with Bacardi Ltd. over the U.S. trademark to Havana Club rum. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit today upheld a 2010 decision by a U.S. District Court in Delaware that found no significant risk of consumer confusion as to whether Bacardi’s Puerto Rico-produced Havana Club brand—sold in the U.S. in small quantities—is made in Cuba. “No reasonable interpretation of the label as a whole could lead to the conclusion that it is false or misleading,” said U.S. Circuit Judge Kent Jordan. Pernod says it will now “consider its options” in the ongoing trademark battle. Pernod general counsel Ian FitzSimons said, “It’s important to note that this decision does not grant any right in the ‘Havana Club’ trademark to Bacardi. We’re determined to continue to fight for fair competition in the United States market where ownership of the ‘Havana Club’ trademark dates back to 1976.”

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