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Trademark Review and Adjudication Board (TRAB) under the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) recently sealed a five-year trademark dispute between Starbucks and Ningbo Sunparty Capital Investment Shares, affirming Sunparty’s registration as trademark.
Ningbo Sunparty applied for “圣巴里Sunparty and the figures” as a registered trademark in January 2003 with the Trademark Office (TMO) under SAIC, certified to be used in service of coffee house and hotel. In June 2005, Starbucks challenged the trademark during the publication period and sought rejection from TMO on the ground of similarity with their registered trademarks.
Denied by TMO, Starbucks then brought the case to TRAB. TRAB upheld TMO’s decision and held that there was obvious disparity between the two trademarks in pronunciation, meaning and overall look, so that no similarity was constituted. Starbucks opted not to appeal after the announcement of the TRAB.
From: China Report Intellectural Property