Saturday, October 17, 2009

Guess who Gucci sues? Just Guess.

By Erik Larson

May 6 (Bloomberg) -- Gucci Groups U.S. unit sued Los Angeles-based Guess? Inc. for trademark infringement, accusing the apparel company of using a network of wholesale buyers to sell imitations of Guccis best-selling designs.

Guess allegedly sells knockoffs of Guccis famous green-red-green stripe designs and interlocking GG patterns on footwear, wallets and other accessories, according to a complaint filed today in federal court in New York.

Gucci, the luxury company owned by Paris-based PPR SA, said the products are part of a sophisticated and elaborate scheme to target Gucci, to create products that are similar in appearance to the most popular and best-known Gucci products.

Guess sells the alleged imitations through its own retail stores as well as factory outlets, Web sites and a vast network of third-party companies that buy the disputed goods wholesale, Gucci said in its complaint. The company has more than 1,000 stores, according to its Web site.

Guess has replicated entire Gucci product designs, to the point that there appears to be a concerted effort to Gucci-ize defendants product line, Gucci alleges.


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