Christian Louboutin has recently claimed in the Antwerp Court in Belgium that its registered trade mark for its iconic red soled shoes was infringed by the Vlaams Belang party’s use of it in a political advertisement. The advertisement featured a woman wearing the red soled stilettos with words written on her legs that condemned Islam. Louboutin further claimed that the advertisement and its content diminished the reputation of the Louboutin brand.
Louboutin has previously taken action against infringers of its trade mark, however this was related to other companies producing red soled shoes. In April 2011, Louboutin alleged that Yves Saint Laurent America Inc. violated its trade mark by selling red-soled shoes. The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York entered a final order in December 2012, dismissing the lawsuit. In the order, Louboutin acknowledged that it has no further claims in this case or otherwise arising from the trade mark of Louboutin against Yves Saint Laurent over red monochrome shoes.
This is the first time Louboutin has initiated legal proceedings against another party using an image of the trade marked red soled shoes rather than for an infringing product. Louboutin was successful in this case in Belgium and the political advertisement was ordered to be removed within 24 hours. The new advertisement features a woman wearing shoes with yellow soles.
Posted on: 3 December 2013