Made by Sweden

 In Court decision, Infringement, Marketing, Trademark, Trademark law

In January 2014, vehicle manufacturer Volvo launched its new campaign “Made By Sweden”, starring world famous football player Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The commercial was an immediate hit and after only 26 hours it had reached 1 million viewers and 100 000 shares on Youtube.

However, even the largest of corporations with their own legal teams and sky-high marketing budgets can forget important details along the way, such as registering a trademark.

In November the same year, a small Swedish consultancy firm by the name Green Stapler, filed a trademark application for “Made By Sweden” to The Swedish Patent and Registration Office (PRV). Five months later it was accepted and registered for various marketing and corporate advisory services.
Following the successful registration, Green Stapler filed two more applications for the same mark, covering a wider range of goods and services, both accepted by PRV.

In 2016, Volvo collaborated with The Swedish Olympic Committee (SOK) and sponsored the documentary series named “Made by Sweden”, which was aired by MTG/TV3. Green Stapler tried to stop MTG from using the brand and demanded half a million Swedish Krona in damages. Little did they know it would backfire.

The dispute came to an end in March 2018 at The Patent and Market Court (PMD). Volvo’s giant campaign was not enough for the company to claim unregistered rights to the ”Made By Sweden” trademark. On the other hand, PMD found that Green Stapler had acted in bad faith and the registrations were cancelled, leaving Green Stapler to pay 1.8 million Swedish Krona for Volvo’s legal costs.

Don’t make the same mistake as Volvo and Green Stapler, make sure that you have solid protection before launching your brand, and make sure defending it from infringers. Otmore provides a one-stop-shop solution, we can assist though every step in the trademark process. Contact us for more information about our services!

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