Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
27 March 2006
Appointed Person
Professor Ruth Annand
Applied Energy Products Limited
Hansgrohe AG
Section 5(2)(b)


Section 5(1)(b): Appeal allowed. Opposition successful.

Points Of Interest

  • As in report


This was an appeal to the Appointed Person of the Hearing Officer’s decision of 10 June 2005 (BL O/154/05). In that decision the Hearing officer had concluded that the opponent’s mark AKTIVA and the applicant’s mark ACTIVA were not confusingly similar and dismissed the opposition.

On appeal the opponent submitted that the Hearing Officer had been wrong in that he had failed to take account of the fact that the letters “K” and “C” may be used interchangeably in trade marks and he had also not given sufficient weight to his finding that the opponent’s mark was highly distinctive for the goods at issue in his global assessment of the likelihood of confusion.

The Appointed Person reviewed the Hearing Officer’s decision and concluded that the grounds of appeal had merit since the Hearing Officer appeared to have given insufficient weight to the distinctive nature of the opponent’s mark and to imperfect recollection. The Appointed Person went on to compare the respective marks afresh, taking account of submissions made at the Hearing, and decided that the respective marks were in fact confusingly similar; that identical and similar goods were at issue and that the oppositions were successful.

The opponent also raised a question about Registrar’s preliminary decision in these two oppositions. In one case the decision had been in favour of the opponent. The Appointed Person reviewed the procedure and the appropriate Trade Mark Rules and concluded that preliminary decisions were purely administrative. Once the parties decided to proceed with the oppositions the preliminary decisions were not a matter to be taken into account.

Full decision O/090/06 PDF document42Kb