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Do it Yourself : likelihood of confusion for Brico centers

In judgments No.T-476/09 to T-483/09, the General Court overturned the decisions of the Board of Appeal and found likelihood of confusion for similar services in Class 35 between the trademarks in conflict.


(contested trademarks)

In 2006, Bricocenter Italia srl applied for a series of trademarks all comprising the expression‘BRICO Center’, with some figurative elements and/or additional elements such as ‘garden’, ‘città’, ‘affiliato’, which were opposed by the Spanish company ATB Norte srl on the grounds of Article 8 (1) (b) CTMR, on the basis of among others the following trademark:

The Court found the trademarks visually and phonetically similar given the common dominant element BRICO and the words ‘center’ and ‘centros’. From a conceptual point of view it censored the BoA’s findings that ‘BRICO’ will be understood by most of the relevant EU public as an abbreviation for ‘bricolage’ (Do-it-yourself or hardware shops in English) because it pointed out that in many European languages, like Slovak (i.e.: “kutil”), the equivalent word is very different. Therefore, for some of the consumers, the signs cannot be compared conceptually and the term ‘Brico’ will be not lack absolute distinctiveness for the services related to DIY. Consequently, the trademarks are overall similar and likelihood of confusion cannot be excluded for similar services.

Posted by: Laetitia Lagarde @ 17.42
Tags: general court, brico, likelihood of confusion,
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