Thursday, August 25, 2016
Goods v services infringement in Indonesia
A longstanding dispute highlights the difference between goods and services and specifically retailing in infringement assessment. The Plaintiff PT Multicom Persada Internasional owns the i BOX trademark registration in class 9 for computer peripherals and software. The Defendant PT Data Citra Mandiri opened Apple product retail outlets in 20 locations in Indonesia under the name iBox. The Plaintiff sued for infringement - details here. The Plaintiff claimed substantial financial losses and intangible damage.
The Defendant requested the Central Jakarta Commercial Court to dismiss the Plaintiff's claim due to errors in their name and address in the claim. They also argued the marks and goods are not similar. But the Central Jakarta Commercial Court rejected the Plaintiff's case so they filed a cassation appeal at the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court has now rejected the Plaintiff's appeal. The Panel of Justices found that despite the similarity in pronunciation, both trade marks use different letters, shapes and are in different classes. The class point is perhaps the most important althought these two could be considered connected channels of trade. Infringement cases are relatively rare so this kind of jurisprudence is useful to see.