Crafts Group LLC (claimant/appellant) v M/S Indeutsch International & M/S KnitPro International (defendants/respondents)

Tuesday 30 January 2024

Appeal against the Order of HHJ Hacon dated 16 June 2023 that ordered that all the claims in the proceedings be stayed pending final resolution of the application made in the EUIPO for cancellation of EU trade mark no. 8884264.

Both KnitPro defendants are partnership firms formed under Indian law. They are part of a group headed by the Indian company Indeutsch Industries Private Limited. From August 2007 the Indeutsch group supplied to Crafts’ predecessor, Crafts Americana, wooden knitting needles and crochet hooks which bore a decorative chevron pattern in two styles.

In late 2009 Crafts applied for a trade mark in the form of one of the chevron patterns in the United States Patent and Trade Mark Office.

To protect its position outside the United States, in February 2010 KnitPro filed two applications in the EUIPO for trade marks. Both were registered on 10 August 2010 in class 26 for knitting needles and crochet hooks. The first, “the EU Chevron Mark” takes a chevron form, as does the second (“the EU Symfonie Mark”), more figuratively. Following Brexit the second defendant obtained comparable UK trade marks, the “UK Chevron Mark” and the “UK Symfonie Mark”.

On 26 May 2010 the parties signed what was referred to as the “Trade Dress Rights Agreement”, by which they sought to delimit geographically their respective uses of two types of chevron signs used on their products.

The relationship broke down. Crafts began to sell knitting needles and crochet hooks in competition with those made by KnitPro.

View hearing