Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
14 May 2008
Hearing Officer
Mr M Reynolds
The Boots Company PLC
Spirig Pharma AG
Section 5(2)(b)


Section 5(2)(b): Opposition failed

Points Of Interest

  • 1. The opponent appealed to the Appointed Person because he had filed submissions which had not reached the Official file and therefore had not been considered by the Hearing Officer when he made his decision. Hearing Officer’s decision set aside and proceedings returned to the Registrar for decision by a different Hearing Officer. (BL O/290/08 dated 12/9/08)
  • 2. The Registry issued a new decision dated 23 December 2008 (BL O/340/08). Again the Hearing Officer decided that the opposition failed.


The opponent owns a registration for the mark SPIRIG in class 3 in respect of identical and similar goods as those of the applicant. Neither side filed evidence so the outcome of this conflict rested on a comparison of the respective marks SPIRIT and SPIRIG.

In comparing the respective marks under Section 5(2)(b) the Hearing Officer concluded that there is a visual difference because one mark is a well known English word whereas the other is likely to be seen as invented. Thus the marks are also conceptually different.

Full decision O/138/08 PDF document52Kb