H&M accused of trademark infringement

Swedish retail giant Hennes & Mauritz is being sued by a Japanese company for trademark infringement. H&M’s head of design, Margaretha van den Bosch and marketing director Jörgen Andersson will give evidence today before a court hearing in New York.

Italian designer Elio Fiorucci has been engaged by H&M to design part of their summer fashion range. This has prompted Edwin, a Japanese jeans producer, to react, as they in fact acquired the Fiorucci brand at the beginning of the nineties.

The Japanese firm launched a case against H&M in the US and demanded that sales of the disputed garments and the related marketing campaign be discontinued in America. They have not claimed any damages from H&M however.

“Elio Fiorucci has designed for us as private individual and his clothes only constitute a part of our summer collection which is being sold under the brand H&M Poolside” stated marketing boss Jörgen Andersson.

H&M have ceased all marking activities relating to the Fiorucci garments in the U.S. Europe is not affected and consumers here have recently begun to see adverts. The approximately 100 articles should be in H&M’s circa 1000 stores from the start of June.

The Local spoke to Annacarin Björne, H&M’s press officer in Stockholm regarding the legal dispute. She did not want to speculate further ahead of the court’s judgement. However she did stress that such issues “were highly unusual for H&M”.

Sources: Dagens Nyheter, Svenska Dagbladet

David murphy

David Murphy is managing director of Word of Mouth Communications