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Schneider Electric wins court battle over brand name

After a three-year legal battle, Schneider Electric has successfully defended its iconic brand, Clipsal, from intellectual property infringement by Clipso Electrical.

Sydney-based Clipso Electrical was found to have engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law, and to have passed off its products as Clipsal’s, through its use of “Clipso”, including in relation to switches that looked the same as those featuring Schneider Electric’s top selling Clipsal registered dolly switch shape.

The CLIPSO registration – which the judge ordered to be cancelled, also found that, following cancellation, any use by Clipso Electrical of “Clipso” in connection with electrical accessories would infringe Schneider Electric’s long‑standing CLIPSAL trade mark registration.

Clipso Electrical is now prohibited from dealing in “Clipso” branded electrical accessories.

Earlier in the case, Clipso Electrical admitted that its USB charger product marketed under the Clipsmart brand infringed Schneider Electric’s registered patent rights, and the Federal Court made orders that the product be permanently removed from the marketplace.

Gareth O’Reilly, managing director for Schneider Electric (Pacific), said: “This judgment is not only important for Schneider Electric, but should give much needed encouragement to other companies who seek to invest in and protect local R&D and innovation.”

Schneider Electric commenced these legal proceedings against Clipso Electrical in December 2013.

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