A California federal court has granted summary judgment to Pom Wonderful LLC in its trademark lawsuit against Pur Beverages Inc., which sells a pomegranate-flavored beverage under the name “Pur Pom.” Pom Wonderful LLC v. Hubbard, No. 13-6917 (C.D. Cal., order entered June 29, 2016).
Pom filed a lawsuit alleging infringement of the “pom” mark, and Pur defended its use by arguing that Pom’s stylized use of the mark—a heart- shaped “O”—prevented Pom from claiming ownership of the non-stylized mark. The court disagreed, finding that the “stylized lettering does not alter the pronunciation or perception of the word; the standard character mark is both aurally and visually indistinguishable from the mark bearing a heart-shaped ‘O.’” Information about the Ninth Circuit decision reversing a lower court’s decision in favor of Pur Beverages appears in Issue 550 of this Update.