ADDCN Technology Co., Ltd. lost administrative action for its mark “101名品會”
E171021Y2 | Nov. 2017（E216）
ADDCN Technology Co., Ltd. (“ADDCN”) successfully registered its “101名品會” mark (“the subject mark”) with Taiwan IPO but the registration was later opposed by Taipei Financial Center Corporation (“FTC Corporation”). Taiwan IPO examined FTC Corporation’s opposition and held the subject mark in violation of subparagraph 11, paragraph 1 of Article 30 of the Taiwan Trademark Act and thus determined that registration of the subject mark should be revoked accordingly. ADDCN filed an administrative appeal against Taiwan IPO’s decision with the Ministry of Economic Affairs (“MOEA’) and the appeal was unsuccessful, for which ADDCN initiated an administrative lawsuit. Later, the Taiwan IP Court ruled against ADDCN and this case is appealable.
According to the IP Court judgment, FTC Corporation’s TAIPEI101 mark, 台北101 mark, and Taipei101.com mark are well-known ones and highly distinctive. Contrary to the aforesaid three marks of FTC Corporation, ADDCN’s “101名品會” mark as a whole has slim distinctiveness, even though it contains special design in transforming “0” of “101” into a bull’s eye. As the numbers “1”, “0”, and “1” of the combination of “101” in bold font are in equal size without any of them being emphasized, the number combination of “101” still stands out to cause the first impression on the consumers and the other three Chinese characters, “名品會” means the gathering of luxury and branded products.
Also as indicated in the IP Court judgment, the subject mark is similar to FTC Corporation’s TAIPEI101 mark, 台北101 mark, and Taipei101.com mark in appearance, pronunciation, and concept, and thus it has high similarity with the three marks of FTC Corporation. Moreover, the subject mark’s designated products are identical or similar to those of FTC Corporation’s TAIPEI101 mark, 台北101 mark, and Taipei101.com mark. In view of the foregoing, the IP Court ruled that the subject mark would easily cause confusion on consumers and therefore dismissed ADDCN’s action. (October 2017)