Language of document :

Reference for a preliminary ruling from the Bundespatentgericht (Germany) lodged on 25 February 2011 - Alfred Strigl v Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt

(Case C-90/11)

Language of the case: German

Referring court

Bundespatentgericht

Parties to the main proceedings

Applicant: Alfred Strigl

Defendant: Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt

Question referred

Is the ground for refusal under Article 3(1)(b) and/or (c) of Directive 2008/95/EC 1also applicable to a word sign which consists of a descriptive word combination and a non descriptive letter sequence, if the trade perceives the letter sequence as an abbreviation of the descriptive words because it reproduces their initial letters, and the trade mark as a whole can thus be construed as a combination of mutually explanatory descriptive indications or abbreviations?

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1 - Directive 2008/95/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October 2008 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks (Codified version); OJ 2008 L 299, p. 25.