European Court Dismisses Freixenet’s Appeal

18 May 2010

The European Court of Justice (hereinafter, ECJ) quashed Freixenet’s final appeal in which they sought to register the exterior appearance of two models of their cava bottles as EU trademarks.

The aforementioned appeals go back to 1996, when Freixenet filed for trademark registration of a specific aspect of the packaging, the frosted black matte and frosted white glass, from the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (hereinafter, OHIM). Freixenet stressed that it did not seek special and exclusive packaging protection.

The OHIM examiner determined that the requested trademarks lacked distinctive original character and that there was no evidence that a distinctive character had been acquired through usage and rejected the application for registration.

Freixenet turned to the Court of First Instance once the appeals filed with the OHIM were dismissed.
Finally, the ECJ confirmed that the OHIM had made a correct assessment in determining that the shape of the bottle was not included in the applications filed by Freixenet, since said applications were based on a combination of two characteristics: the exterior aspect and the packaging colour.

For further information please contact Ángel Aldasoro: