renaissance: the American company that manages the Renaissance hotel chain wins the brand battle in SC against the Indian company | India News
The legal dispute arose in 2009 when the MNC, which also runs four 5-star hotels in the country, learned that another Bangalore-based company Sai Renaissance was also operating in the hospitality industry and was running two hotels with a similar name. Although the trial court returned the verdict in favor of the US company, the High Court overturned the order, forcing it to move to the Supreme Court.
The appeal filed by Law company Anand and Anand, alleged that the American company has been in the hotel business since the year 1981 and is the licensee and owner of the trademark and service mark “renaissance” in connection with the hotel , restaurant, catering, bar, cocktail bar, spa services, etc. and an Indian company managing hotels with the name “Sai Renaissance” constitutes a violation of his rights.
Lead attorneys KV Viswanathan and Pravin Anand, appearing for the company, argued that simply using the “SAI” prefix before the trademark would not save the Indian company from a trademark infringement claim and that the test of deception or confusion was wrongly applied by the High Court in the context of an action for infringement.
In line with their claim, a bench of judges L Nageswara Rao, BR Gavai and BV Nagarathna overturned the HC order and ended more than a decade of legal battle over the trademark.
“It should further be noted that the words “RENAISSANCE” and “SAI RENAISSANCE” are aurally and visually similar. As already indicated above, paragraph (9) of Article 29 of the Trademark Law trademark consists of or includes words, the trademark may be infringed by the verbal use of these words as well as their visual representation. , would also constitute an act of infringement under the provisions of paragraph (9) of article 29 of the said law,” the bench said.
Referring to the Supreme Court’s earlier ruling, the bench said that once defendant’s mark is found to be identical to plaintiff’s registered mark, the court could not have investigated whether whether the offense is likely to mislead or confuse. . “In an infringement action, an injunction would be issued as soon as it is proven that the defendant is misusing the plaintiff’s mark.” said the bench.
He said that the HC had erred in finding that no confusion was likely to be created in the minds of consumers, because the category of consumers of these two companies was totally different, one exploiting a class international luxury while the other managed local hotels.