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Lindt Teddy has its picnic but Haribo trademark row will rumble on

By Oliver Nieburg+

14-Apr-2014

German appeal court rules in Lindt's favor
German appeal court rules in Lindt's favor

Lindt has won its appeal against Haribo for alleged infringement of Haribo’s golden bear trademark, but the case will go all the way to the Supreme Court in Germany.

Last Friday, the 6th Civil Division of the Court of Appeal in Cologne overturned a regional court ruling and dismissed Haribo’s case against Lindt.

It ruled that Lindt’s 3D-shaped Gold Teddy (Goldbären) did not infringe the trademarked name for the word golden bear (Goldbären) of Haribo’s gummy bears.

Parties agree to appeal

Sylvia Kälin, corporate communications at Lindt & Sprüngli, said in statement: “This decision and all further decisions will be appealed (by Lindt or Haribo) until supreme court's decision will be achieved, but of course, we are happy that the second instance court (OLG Köln) has supported our view of the issue.“

She added that until the final judgement, Lindt Teddy would be sold on the market without restrictions.

Haribo was contacted comment, but failed to respond before publication.

Case overturned

The first decision in Landgericht Köln (Cologne Regional Court) found that Lindt Gold Teddy was the pictorial representation of Haribo’s word trademark,

“In the second instance, however, the tide has now turned,” said a release by Lindt’s lawyers at the legal firm Eisenführ Speiser.

“The Lindt team, including the designated brands experts Rainer Böhm and Günther Eisenführ convinced the court that the relevant public does not believe the golden chocolate bear came from Haribo.” [translation]

The case will now be heard by the Supreme Court of Germany in what will be final ruling.

Last year, the German Supreme Court ruled that German firm Confiserie Riegelein’s golden chocolate bunny did not infringe Lindt’s trademark for a 3D seated gold chocolate bunny in a case that spanned 12 years.

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