26 Jul 2022

After a 22-year legal battle, the British luxury footwear company won a ruling from the Chinese Supreme Court confirming that the brand trademark “Manolo Blahnik” is actually the property of the UK based company.

 

 

The legal battle ensued in 2000 when a Chinese businessman, Fang Yuzhou, registered a trademark “Manolo & Blahnik” at the patent office effectively making him owner of this brand name. This is because in China, there exists a “first to file” trademark registration system. As he registered first, Mr Fang owned the brand name “pirated” from the British firm.


A two-decade legal battle was declared with the UK company’s appeals being rejected since it could not prove to the satisfaction of the patent office that it had a commercial reputation in China.


Nevertheless, having persevered and used all the legal instances to reach the final decision of the Chinese Supreme Court, the UK Manolo Blahnik won the right to use the brand name/trademark in China.


“It was a huge hole in our existence,” Kristina Blahnik, CEO of the brand and niecer of the founder, told the Financial Times. Blahnik said the company’s plans for the Chinese market are still in the early stages. But she hopes to start selling directly to the People’s Republic by the second half of next year.

About APLF

We bring leather, material and fashion businesses together: an opportunity to meet and greet face to face. We bring them from all parts of the world so that they can find fresh partners, discover new customers or suppliers and keep ahead of industry developments.

 

We organise a number of trade exhibitions which focus on fashion and lifestyle: sectors that are constantly in flux, so visitors and exhibitors alike need to be constantly aware both of the changes around them and those forecast for coming seasons.

Follow Us On:

Contact us