Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
13 August 2003
Hearing Officer
Mr J MacGillivray
Freixenet SA
G H Mumm et Cie Societe Vinicole De Champagne Successeur
Sections 5(2)(b) & 5(4)(a)


Section 5(2)(b) - Opposition successful.

Section 5(4)(a) - No formal finding.

Points Of Interest

  • 1. Comparison of the marks CORDON ROUGE, CORDON ROSE v CORDON BLANCO.
  • 2. Family of marks.


The opposition was based on a number of 'CORDON' marks registered in Class 33, such as CORDON ROUGE, CORDON ROSE etc.

Under Section 5(2)(b) the Hearing Officer noted that the opponents possessed a substantial reputation in their CORDON ROUGE mark in relation to champagne; the evidence relating to use of their other marks, however, did not demonstrate any entitlement to an enhanced penumbra of protection. The Hearing Officer was also unable to conclude from the evidence that they constituted a 'family of mark'’.

Assessing the similarity of the respective marks the Hearing Officer concluded that they shared an 'identical, distinctive and dominant' component, the word CORDON and accordingly there was significant visual and aural similarity. Conceptually, too, there was a strong similarity.

Overall, having considered the identicality of the goods and the scope for imperfect recollection, the Hearing Officer found a likelihood of confusion and the opposition under Section 5(2)(b) succeeded accordingly.

The Hearing Officer made no finding under Section 5(4)(a) but considered that the opponents had no stronger case under that head.

Full decision O/229/03 PDF document179Kb