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King beats off Italian panty challenge

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16:59 CEST+02:00
The Swedish royals have beaten off accusations of illegally trading on the good name of an Italian underwear maker.

The complaint comes from the Italian company Calzificio Pinelli, which owns the trademark Solidea, under which it sells underwear. The company claims that the name of Solliden, the royal's summer palace on Öland, breaches this trademark.

Solliden, which is the king's private property, was built in 1906 by Sweden's Queen Victoria. It was inspired by a villa on the Italian island of Capri. But the link to Italy and the similar names would appear to be all that the two brands have in common.

On its website, Solidea advertises ranges including 'Personality Extra Large', 'Silver Support' and 'Maman'.

King Carl XVI Gustaf registered the name Solliden as a trademark two years ago, through a subsidiary of Benson AB, his holding company.

According to the Italian company's lawyer, Lottie-Ann Hulth, "the trademarks are nearly identical, both phonetically and visually."

But following a two-year investigation, the Swedish Patent and Registration Office on Friday dismissed the underwear-maker's application.

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