Hogan Lovells Secures Key Trademark Decision for Red Bull
28 September 2010
WASHINGTON, D.C., 28 September 2010 – In a significant victory for client Red Bull GmbH and Red Bull North America, Inc., Hogan Lovells US LLP secured a general exclusion order prohibiting the importation of unauthorized (gray market) Red Bull energy drink products into the United States by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). As a result, the U.S. Customs Department will block gray market Red Bull products from U.S. ports. This is one of only a handful of general exclusion orders ever issued by the ITC in a gray market infringement case.
Unauthorized energy drink products include those that infringe on any marks or designs confusingly similar to Red Bull's or are otherwise misleading as to source, origin, or sponsorship. This decision will help assure consumers that all Red Bull products sold in the U.S. have travelled through authorized and quality-controlled distribution channels.
The U.S. International Trade Commission's order and opinion were delivered to President Obama for final approval.
Washington, D.C. office partner Ray Kurz led the Hogan Lovells team and said, "This is a very important victory for Red Bull and we will continue to work with them to eliminate gray market goods from the marketplace."
Kurz along with Anna Kurian Shaw worked with Washington, D.C. associates Walter Stillwell, Jordana Rubel, and paralegal Natasha Russ on the matter and were also assisted by Miami partner Julie Nevins and others.
Kurz and his team previously obtained an injunction and a $2.1 million settlement for Red Bull from a gray marketer and recently filed numerous lawsuits in federal courts around the country seeking damages from gray market importers.
Red Bull Energy Drink was founded in 1984 and was first introduced in the Austrian market in 1987 before entering the U.S. market in 1997. Today, Red Bull remains the number one energy drink worldwide and in the U.S., and it can be found in more than 160 countries worldwide. For more information, visit www.redbullusa.com.