"UNDER ARMOUR” Won “Uncle Martian” in Trademark Infringement in China
In June 2020, the second Instance of Under Armour, Inc. vs Fujian Ting Fei Long Sports Products Co., Ltd Case regarding trademark infringement and unfair competition handled by Chang Tsi & Partners on behalf of Under Armour, Inc., was concluded by the Supreme People’s Court of The People’s Republic of China (thereafter referred to as “the Supreme Court”).
The Supreme Court issued its final judgment for this Case, where it rejected all the appeal claims made by Fujian Ting Fei Long Sports Products Co., Ltd (thereafter referred to as “TFL”) and upheld the first-instance judgment made by the first-instance court, i.e. the People’s Higher Court of Fujian Province of the People’s Republic of China (thereafter referred to as “Fujian Higher Court”), where TFL was ordered to cease the infringement, to destroy infringing samples, brochures, posters and business cards, to publish a statement on Sina.com to eliminate the adverse impact, and to compensate Under Armour, Inc. for damages including reasonable expenses at CNY 2 million. This Case has attracted much attention from many international media including The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Chang Tsi & Partners not only successfully helped Under Armour, Inc. in obtaining the preliminary injunction in the first instance, but also eventually won in the second instance of this Case.
Under Armour, Inc., a leading company in the field of performance sportswear, always spare no effort to take all possible commercial and legal means to safeguard its rights worldwide. Chang Tsi & Partners represented this Case and won in the second instance, marking the success of Under Armour’s brand protection strategy. Meanwhile, due to the high influence of this Case, the public is aware that the current IP infringement cases in China are more complex than before, which can also be used by the peers as an important reference in identifying complex IP infringement cases in China.
For a long time, fake brands has been infringing the intellectual property rights of the owners of well-known brands, e.g., Uncle Martian. Through running such fake brands, infringing manufacturers gain profits in a short period of time, squeeze the market share of other famous international brands, and damage the international image of "Made in China". Except in some big first-tier cities where people have a clear perception of brands, in the rest of the cities and towns in China, especially, fake brands are breeding and spreading. With fake names , imitated appearances and lower prices, the copycat products may always work on the edge of the law and continue to make high profits in the end market.
However, consumers’ attitude towards copycat products and their own consumption choice will influence each other. Only when consumers understand and recognize more about the value of creativeness and intellectual property, China’s national brands will develop better. This is the reason why Chang Tsi & Partners has been working so hard for 18 years in the field of intellectual property in China. The above reason also drives Chang Tsi & Partners to continuously improve ourselves seeking for a higher standard to protect the rights of the clients with a high-quality service.