Skip to comments.Vuitton Loses Dooney-Bourke Trademark Bid
Posted on 08/27/2004 12:57:18 PM PDT by Red Badger
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Louis Vuitton on Friday lost a bag battle to stop competitors from imitating its famous "LV" logo style when a U.S. judge refused to order Dooney & Bourke to stop marketing a line with its "DB" monogram.
In her ruling, U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin denied Louis Vuitton's motion for an injunction against Dooney & Bourke saying that such a move would hurt competition by giving the French luxury goods company a monopoly over a "look."
Louis Vuitton, a unit of LVMH (LVMH.PA: Quote, Profile, Research) , is suing Dooney & Bourke in Manhattan federal court for trademark infringement.
"Louis Vuitton created a new look and now seeks to preclude others from following its lead," Scheindlin said. "If Louis Vuitton succeeds, then it will have used the law to achieve an unwarranted anticompetitive result ... the objective of trademark law is not to harm competition."
Although the judge refused to issue an injunction, the case could still go to trial or Louis Vuitton might seek an appeal. Neither a spokeswoman nor a lawyer for Louis Vuitton could immediately be reached for comment.
At issue is the style introduced by Louis Vuitton in October 2002 to print its famous "LV" and geometric shapes in an array of bright colors on white and black handbags. When the look quickly became popular others, including Dooney & Bourke, launched their own versions.
Dooney & Bourke, based in Norwalk, Conn., produces high-end bags, wallets and other accessories.
Scheindlin said that while Dooney & Bourke emulated certain features of the LV bags, it did not mean the company intended to deceive customers into thinking the product was made by Louis Vuitton.
The Vuitton line, created by designer Marc Jacobs and Japanese artist Takashi Murakami, can cost upwards of $15,000. Madonna and Sarah Jessica Parker are among celebrities who have been photographed toting the bags and Jennifer Lopez appeared in the Vuitton ad campaign with the Murakami.
Dooney introduced the "It-Bag" line in July 2003 with interlocked initials "D" and "B." The bags can cost from $125 to $275.
Scheindlin said that while the two lines have similarities there are substantial differences allowing consumers to tell them apart.
"With the exception of a handful of e-mail messages from unidentified customers, Louis Vuitton has failed to present any evidence suggesting confusion among actual consumers," the judge said.
LV= Lousy Vinyl
My 17 year old daughter was given one by her new friend who just moved here from NYC last year. It was pretty but cheaply made. The strap came apart within a month and the zipper was jammed. Save your money, Texas Rose. Buy good old leather, Corinthian or otherwise....
I think Badger is bad-mouthing the Vuitton bag, and I'll second the motion. LV is rot. Dooney, on the other hand . . . I have a Dooney feedbag-model purse on the floor next to me that I've had since grad school, and that ended in 1993.
Most likely it was a knockoff.
Someone's got WAYYYYY to much money.
That bag better be able to drive my car.
Much to the chagrin of my wallet...
Does D&B make shoes? If YES, You're DOOMED!
$18.95, Horse not included....
Have they checked the streets of NYC lately?
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