CHINA TOPIX

Updated 11:29 AM EDT, Tue, Jun 16, 2020

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Chinese Court Rules Against U.S. Sportswear Company New Balance in Trademark Infringement Case

New Balance Loses Trademark Infringement Case.

(Photo : Getty Images.) U.S. Sportswear company New Balance has lost a trademark infringement case against a local Chinese company.

A local court in Chinese city of Guangdong has upheld a previous ruling against U.S. sportswear giant New Balance in a trademark infringements case. However, the court has ordered the company to pay only five million Yuan ($756,945) in compensation, far less than the 98 million Yuan ordered by the previous ruling.

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The U.S. sports shoe maker was accused of using a Chinese language trademark in its logo. In recent months, China has seen spate of cases in which mostly foreign companies have been accused of trademark infringement.

New Balance has said that it is highly disappointed with the ruling and is considering challenging in a higher court.

"This ruling is particularly concerning as it is contrary to the rest of the developed world's understanding of Intellectual Property," New Balance Spokeswoman Amy Dow said in emailed comments on Friday, adding the ruling could establish a "poor precedent."        

Last week, a court in Beijing found Apple's iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models to be too similar to those of a Chinese smart Phone, ordering the tech company to stop selling their popular smartphones in their city. In another case, UK based luxury carmaker Jaguar Land Rover has sued a local car manufacturer for copying the design of its Range Rover Evoque.

Experts say that most foreign companies rarely win a copyright or trademark infringement cases against local Chinese companies. However, this factor has never stopped foreign companies from entering into China, as they are lured by the enormity of the Chinese market.

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