Press Release

 

Belstaff legal action closes down hundreds of counterfeit websites

US ruling sees luxury fashion brand awarded more than $42 million in damages

LONDON, UK, October 13, 2015 – MarkMonitor®, the world leader in enterprise brand protection and a Thomson Reuters Intellectual Property & Science business, today announces that one of its high profile clients, luxury fashion brand Belstaff, has won its ongoing battle against online counterfeiters. Following a civil lawsuit heard in the US courts, judges ordered counterfeiters to pay more than $42 million in damages in the landmark counterfeit case, which resulted in an unprecedented number of offending websites, 676 in total, being handed over to Belstaff.

The legal result follows the company’s decision to embark on a major protection programme for all of its IP – from registering of trademarks to individual products, including seeking external help from online brand protection specialists, MarkMonitor. The programme was put in place to monitor the full range of the different marketplaces and individual websites selling counterfeit products. The search also focused on any websites using the Belstaff name in their domain name, as well as generic sites listing counterfeit Belstaff products.

Elena Mauri, head of legal, Belstaff said: “We are delighted with the results from the ruling. There are other high profile luxury brands that have taken advantage of the US counterfeiting law, however we believe that our case has set the bar even higher due to the unprecedented number of sites that were taken down in one go. The whole legal process took less than four months and none of the single top 20 websites that were cited in the case are still in operation today. We certainly wouldn’t hesitate to take this legal route in the future, and we will continue to take a zero tolerance approach to any further illicit counterfeiting behaviour.”

In today’s digitally-led world, an increasing number of forward-thinking luxury brands are expanding their online offering and, in the UK alone, ecommerce now accounts for around 11 percent of all luxury sales. The growing trend for taking luxury goods online looks set to continue, with leading retail analysts McKinsey forecasting that ecommerce would account for 18 per cent of all global luxury sales by 2025. Gavin Haig, CEO, Belstaff, said: “At Belstaff, e-commerce has been a major driver for the growth of our brand. However, alongside the clear benefits of venturing into the online retail market, we were aware of the potential negative impact from counterfeiters. Right from the outset, we have been determined to stop our customers falling prey to counterfeiters, we want to do everything in our power to protect our loyal customer base and our hard-earned 91 year old heritage.”

The majority of the counterfeit products were jackets and outer wear, particularly counterfeit copies of Belstaff’s best-selling leather jackets. The counterfeit copies were many seasons old, designs that were no longer in production at Belstaff.

The sophisticated MarkMonitor technology is capable of exploring an entire network of sites, including both the index and non-index results, as well as examine fundamental criteria such as the website’s design and the payment processes. The search results for Belstaff uncovered 3,000 websites selling counterfeits products, and the technology also identified that more than 800 of the websites were managed by one individual based in China.

Jerome Sicard, Regional Manager Southern Europe, MarkMonitor said: “This decision sends a stark warning to online counterfeiters and underlines the increasing importance of online brand protection. This is not the first case of its kind, however the Belstaff ruling is unusual due to the substantial number of websites being handed over to the brand. Thanks to the proactive action by the Belstaff legal team, US law firm DWT and the use of the latest online brand protection technology, Belstaff can continue to provide its customers with its sought-after luxury goods through the most reliable and safe online offering.”

Since the court decision in June, the Belstaff brand protection strategy has remained firmly in place and the company is not ruling out using the same legislation against potential counterfeiters in the future.

###

® 2019 MarkMonitor. MarkMonitor and its logo, as well as all other trademarks used herein are trademarks of their respective owners and used under license.

About MarkMonitor

MarkMonitor, a leading enterprise brand protection solution and a Clarivate Analytics flagship brand, provides advanced technology and expertise that protects the revenues and reputations of the world's leading brands. In the digital world, brands face new risks due to the Web's anonymity, global reach and shifting consumption patterns for digital content, goods and services. Customers choose MarkMonitor for its unique combination of advanced technology, comprehensive protection and extensive industry relationships to address their brand infringement risks and preserve their marketing investments, revenues and customer trust. For more information, visit www.markmonitor.com.

About Clarivate Analytics

Clarivate Analytics is a global leader in providing trusted insights and analytics to accelerate the pace of innovation. Building on a heritage going back more than a century and a half, we have built some of the most trusted brands across the innovation lifecycle, including the Web of Science, Cortellis, Derwent, CompuMark, MarkMonitor and Techstreet. Today, Clarivate Analytics is a new and independent company on a bold entrepreneurial mission, to help our clients radically reduce the time from new ideas to life-changing innovations. For more information, please visit clarivate.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release and oral statements made with respect to information contained in this release may contain forward-looking statements regarding Clarivate Analytics. Forward-looking statements provide Clarivate Analytics’ current expectations or forecasts of future events and may include statements regarding anticipated synergies and other future expectations. These statements involve risks and uncertainties including factors outside of Clarivate Analytics’ control that may cause actual results to differ materially. Clarivate Analytics undertakes no obligation to update or revise the statements made herein, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Press Contact
Michelle Smithson
The Whiteoaks Consultancy
+44 (0)1252 727313
Email: michelles@whiteoaks.co.uk

MarkMonitor Contact
800 745 9229 (U.S.)
+44 (0) 1978 528 370
www.markmonitor.com

US (800) 745 9229

|

Global +1 (628) 256 7175

|

Europe +44 (0) 1978 528 370

All Contact Information

Search WHOIS