Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
4 September 2002
Hearing Officer
Mr D Landau
Hi-Spirits International Ltd
Brandbrew SA
Sections 5(2)(b) & 5(4)(a)


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

Section 5(4)(a) - Opposition failed

Points Of Interest

  • None


The opponents opposition was based on their ownership of registrations for the mark BASS and Bass & Co (in script) in Class 32 in respect of the same and similar goods as those of the applicants. The opponents also filed details of extensive user of their marks and the Hearing Officer accepted that these marks were well known.

The applicants stated that they owned a registration for the mark BOSS in Class 32 in respect of cider and they how wished to extend into lagers and beers. They claimed modest use of their mark in relation to lagers from 1995 (the application was filed in May 1995) onwards and pointed to a lack of confusion between the respective marks.

Under Section 5(2)(b) the Hearing Officer compared the respective marks BASS, Bass & Co (in script) with BOSS. Bearing in mind the well known meaning of both marks, which would be widely recognised by the public, the Hearing Officer concluded that the respective marks were not similar phonetically, visually or conceptually. As the respective marks were not similar the opponents failed in their opposition under Section 5(2)(b).

Under Section 5(4)(a) - Passing Off - the Hearing Officer accepted that the opponents had the necessary reputation to support this ground of their opposition. However, as the respective marks were not similar they also failed in their opposition on this ground

Full decision O/364/02 PDF document53Kb