Court seeks trademark specialists' views in Harrods vs Harrods case

DUBAI - The Court of First Instance has adjourned to June 15 hearing on a case filed by two Dubai-based companies registered as Harrods General Trading and Harrods Tourism, seeking cancellation of the London Harrods trademark registered at the UAE Ministry of Economy and Trade under the name of Harrods.

By Mohsen Rashed

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Published: Thu 25 May 2006, 11:51 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Feb 2023, 9:58 AM

The Court sustained the petition of the Dubai Harrods and assigned a veteran expert specialised in trademarks to scrutinise the points earlier raised by the defence to show whether the petitioner has used the Harrods London trademark within the UAE, and if the name was well known.

Court records showed that Harrods .London filed a lawsuit on April 19 last year against the two Dubai-based companies on the charge of abusing its trademark, and claimed compensation.

Harrods Dubai's lawyer Sameer Jaafar, filed a counter suit demanding the cancellation of Harrods London trademark from the records of the Dubai Economic Development Department (DEDD) on the ground that it had not been used for five successive years, and a public opinion survey to know if the trademarks of the Dubai-based companies are known and used within the UAE.

The wrangling between the two litigants heated up, since business tycoon Mohamed Al Fayed, owner of Harrods London, insisted on compensation. Yet, Faisal Mahmoud, owner of Harrods General Trading and Harrods Tourism insists on striking off Al Fayed's registration from the DEDD records according to Law No. 8/2002 pertaining to trademarks, which sets a standard for determining if the trademark is world famous, and well known to the public due to proper promotion.

Being unused inside the UAE means it is not known to them, and the only thing people know about it is that it is in London, and hence world trademarks registered abroad are not to be extended to other countries.

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