FC Barcelonas attempt to trademark register their badge outline was rejected by European General Court

 In Community Trademarks, Court decision, ctm, EUIPO, Intellectual Property, News, OHIM, The Trademark Thermometer, Trademark, Trademark law

European soccer champions FC Barcelona cannot trademark the outline of its club badge because it lacks any “striking feature,” an EU court ruled last Thursday.

Barcelona FC had hoped to use the figurative mark — a black outline of their badge — in marketing for items including stationery and clothing.


The case was brought after FC Barcelona applied to the OHIM (oami.europa.eu) for registration of a figurative trademark consisting in the shape of its crest as a Community trade mark in April 2013.

In May 2014, OHIM rejected the application for registration on the ground that the sign in question was “not liable to draw consumers’ attention to the commercial origin of the goods and services covered by the application.”

Barcelona followed the initial decision and brought an action against OHIM’s decision before the European General Court.

”The General Court conbarms that none of the characteristics of the sign at issue contains any striking feature which is liable to attract the attention of consumers,” a statement said.

”In fact, the mark sought will rather tend to be perceived by consumers merely as a shape and will not enable them to distinguish the proprietor?s goods or services from those of other undertakings,” it said.

”In those circumstances, the General Court dismisses in its entirety the action brought by Barcelona FC.”

Barcelona FC may file an appeal, limited to points of law only, with the European Court of Justice within two months.

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