Online retailer VictoriaPlum.com has succeeded in legal proceedings against competitor Victorian Plumbing for infringement of trademark in a ruling from the High Court released today.
Victorian Plumbing paid to advertise in search engine results when consumers had searched for the Victoria Plum brand name and related terms. The court ruled that Victorian Plumbing was spending “hundreds of thousands of pounds per annum” on adverts that have been found liable for trademark infringement.
VictoriaPlum.com, which started trading in 2001, says it will now seek damages from Victorian Plumbing for the losses caused by the unlawful infringements. During the hearing the court heard from VictoriaPlum.com founder Jason Walker and Mark Radcliffe, managing director of Victorian Plumbing. VictoriaPlum.com’s case was supported by expert evidence from a leading industry expert. The week long court hearing took place at the High Court in London in October this year.
VictoriaPlum.com's chief executive officer Paul McClenaghan welcomed the ruling, saying, “We know our potential customers are over 20 times more likely to know the VictoriaPlum.com brand than that of Victorian Plumbing. The court found that Victorian Plumbing acted unlawfully, infringed our trademarks and was increasing and exacerbating confusion for customers.
"We were left with no option but to take legal action against Victorian Plumbing to protect our customers and we are pleased that our concerns have been vindicated. We will now seek substantial damages from Victorian Plumbing through continued legal action.”