As one of the famous purifier producers in the world, the Switzerland-based IQAir Company, was a witness in the company’s trademark lawsuit against a Beijing company in China.
Recently, Beijing IP Court, during the first hearing, rejected the decision made by the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board (TRAB) under the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC), and ordered TRAB to make a new decision on the trademark related to IQ Air. Before that, IQAir once requested TRAB to announce the invalidation of the IQ Air which was filed for registration by IQAir (Beijing) S&T Company in Class 11 products, but was rejected by TRAB.
IQAir was established in 1963. In 2001, IQAir expanded to Asia, and then entered into Chinese market. After more than fifty years’ development, IQAir has become a famous brand in global purifier market. At present, IQAir has established a subsidiary in China to distribute the air purifier in that market.
IQAir, however, had not been registered as a trademark in China. In 2013, IQAir requested TRAB to announce the invalidation of NO.4887041 trademark registered by IQ Air Beijing.
The NO.4887041 trademark IQ Air was filed for registration in September 2005, and it was approved in 2008, certified to be used in Class 11 air conditioning equipment products.
After examination, TRAB held that the evidences provided by IQAir failed to prove the IQAir’s prior using in the same or similar products before IQ Air filed for registration by IQAir Beijing. So the scramble for registering of IQ Air does not constituted according to the Trademark Law of China. TRAB then maintained the registration of No.4887041 IQ Air trademark.
The disgruntled IQAir brought the case to Beijing IP Court on May 8, 2015, and requested the Court to revoke the decision made by TRAB.
The Court held that the trademark had already been used within the Chinese territory and was well received by the public. The evidences provided by IQAir could prove the IQAir trademark used on air purifier has become influential in China before IQ Air was registered. Having known the IQ Air trademark has already been used and was an influential trademark, IQAir Beijing still filed for registration of almost same trademark with prior trademark in similar products. Based on the above fact and reason, the Court revoked the decision made by TRAB and ordered TRAB to make a new decision.