Cartier – set up in 1847 – has always been one of theworld’s top luxury brands.
Because of its well-known reputation, Cartier isoften target of unfair competition worldwide.
PRC company Mengkela sells its own jewellery productsthrough the famous online shopping platform Yihaodian, which is run byShanghai Yishiduo E-Commerce Co., Ltd.
Mengkela promoted its products on such platform bymaking various referrals to Cartier, such as « Cartier classic crowndiamond ring », etc...
Cartier discovered this unfair practice in August 2011and decided to file a suit against both Mengkela (the direct infringer) andYishiduo (the platform provider) for trademark infringement.
Yishiduo claimed not to be responsible for Mengkela’sactions, based on its nature of web service provider for platformYihaodian.
On the other hand, Mengkela claimed that thedescription « Cartier classic crown diamond ring » can not beconsidered as trademark infringement.
Shanghai Pudong District People's Court stated thatboth Mengkela and Yishiduo unfairly mentioned « Cartier » on theproducts’ advertisement, thus exploiting Cartier’s reputation to attractvisibility and prestige.
This decision is particularly important as it statesthe provider’s joint responsibility for IP infringement carried out on itsplatform.
Therefore, the court ordered the two defendants to paydamage of 130,978 RMB for infringement of Cartier's trademark.