BMW filed a lawsuit against the DMW, which happens to be an electric scooter and rickshaw maker for using a trademark that is similar to theirs. Finally, BMW has won the case.
Trademark violation stories are quite common around the globe. Small organizations are often seen registering trademarks that are phonetically similar to those of some bigger brands. Something similar happened in our country as well. Om Balajee Automobile Private Limited is a company that manufactures electric scooters and rickshaws. It registered a trademark – DMW, which was similar to the BMW. As you would already know, the latter is a German carmaker known for making some of the best luxury cars in the world. Vexed by the act of Om Balajee Automobiles of registering the DMW trademark, BMW filed a case against the electric rickshaw maker in the Delhi High Court in 2017.
DMW cannot sell their vehicles anymore under the 'DMW' trademark.
BMW provided the court with details claiming that the DMW trademark is phonetically similar to theirs. BMW also said that it operates a sales network in 140 countries, runs production lines in 14 countries, and its revenue was calculated at 94,163 million Euros at the time of filing the case. And this trademark violation will affect their brand's value. In response, Om Balajee Automobiles claimed that the case was registered after 4 years from the date of trademark registration. However, jurisdiction rejected their appeal and reverted that “DMW trademark was registered to mislead an average man of ordinary intelligence”.
Court announced Om Balajee Automobiles as prime guilty for violating trademark laws. Also, asked them to stay away from such malicious practices and henceforth do not use the DMW trademark in any way.
Although, this is not the first time BMW has encountered such an issue. The carmaker’s legacy of making some of the best cars in the world is undeniable. Thus, smaller organizations do end up registering a trademark that sounds or read similar to ‘BMW’. In 2016, a Chinese company registered ‘BMN’ trademark. The German carmaker filed a lawsuit against the firm and won the case. In return, the Chinese company had to compensate the carmaker with a sum of 3 million Yuan. Also, in the USA in 2019, a telecommunication company registered a trademark of BMW Telecommunication, which led BMW Group to fight for their rights again. However, the decision for the case was also in favour of the BMW.