Lubberger Lehment succeeds for its client Desigual in invalidity action regarding the Puma Fenty Bow Sneaker design

The European Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), by decision of 28 October 2019, at the request of the Spanish fashion company Abasic S.L. (“Desigual”) declared the Registered Community Design No. 003866516-0001 (Decision No. ICD 104819) of Puma, shown below (in part), invalid:

With the Registered Community Design Puma had claimed protection for a sneaker developed in cooperation with the artist Rihanna. On the fashion platform “Lyst” the shoe was the most sought after sneaker in 2017.

The EUIPO has declared the Puma Registered Community Design invalid because of inconsistent views. Within a total of seven views of the design, the Office identified several divergences. These deviations cannot be explained even by objective interpretation, which is why, in the opinion of the EUIPO, it is not possible to identify a single design. Rather, the representation shows several designs, which is contrary to the definition of a “design” pursuant to Art. 3(a) of the Regulation on Community Designs. Only recently, the German Federal Court of Justice (BGH) had also ruled for the German design that deviations in the various views of the design can lead to its invalidity (judgment of 20 December 2018, docket no. I ZB 25/18).

Lubberger Lehment lawyers Dr. Benjamin Koch (Munich) and Eva Maierski (Berlin) represented Desigual in the invalidity proceeding. The invalidity proceeding was preceded by a preliminary injunction proceeding initiated by Puma against a Desigual sneaker which, in Puma’s view, infringed its Registered Community Design.

The EUIPO decision is not yet final.