Adidas loses court battle against fashion designer Thom Browne over


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Adidas has lost a court case against New York fashion designer Thom Browne after suing over a stripe design.

A jury in Manhattan said Adidas had failed to show Thom Browne had infringed the sportswear giant’s signature three-stripe trademark.

The jury found the fashion house’s parallel stripe designs were not likely to cause consumer confusion with Adidas’s products.

Thom Browne had argued that, among other things, its designs have a different number of stripes and stripes are a common design element for clothing.

Image:
Fashion designer Thom Browne arrived at court wearing socks showing his stripe design. Pic: AP

The designer’s sportswear features four parallel stripes wrapping around the arm or leg of shorts and sweatshirts.

Adidas sued the brand in 2021, claiming its four-bar and “Grosgrain” stripe patterns on its shoes and high-end activewear violated its three-stripe trademark rights.

The German company has filed more than 90 lawsuits and signed more than 200 settlement agreements since 2008 related to the trademark, according to court documents in the case.

Thom Browne previously used a three-bar design on its clothing, changing it to the four-stripe design after Adidas objected in 2007.

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An Adidas spokesperson said the company was disappointed with the jury’s decision but will “continue to vigilantly enforce our intellectual property, including filing any appropriate appeals”.

A spokesperson for Thom Browne Inc said the company was pleased with the verdict.

Designer Thom Browne arrives at Manhattan Federal Court in New York
Image:
Designer Thom Browne (R) arrives at Manhattan Federal Court in New York

The fashion house said confusion between the companies’ designs was unlikely because they “operate in different markets, serving different customers, and offer their products at strikingly…


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