ARGENTA LIMITED V ARGENTA DISCOVERY 2009 LIMITED [2014] ATMO 80

Argenta Limited opposed the application by Argenta Discovery for ARGENTA covering ‘manuals not for banking or finance’ and a wide range of technical and scientific services, under section 60.

The opponent led evidence of its extensive use of its ARGENTA trade mark within the very specialised research and manufacturing company for the health industry. This evidence was viewed by the Hearing Officer as evidencing that ‘[the opponent’s] ARGENTA word and logo trade marks are well-known within this marketplace’.

Having established the first element under section 60, the Hearing Officer turned to the likelihood of deception or confusion and noted:

Here the trade marks of the parties are identical and the goods and services involved are to all intents the same and/or very closely related. It does not bear dwelling upon at length. It is without doubt that the reputation of the Opponent’s trade marks is such that use of the Trade Mark would be likely to deceive or confuse.

The Hearing Officer summed up the oddity of this matter:

It cannot pass without observing that it is quite remarkable that two completely unrelated companies on opposite ends of the Earth could select such similar distinctive trade marks to use in relation to such similar goods and services; and yet such is the case here.

The application was nevertheless refused.

To view the Office decision, click here.