Judgment of the Court (First Chamber) of 12 June 2008.

O2 Holdings Limited and O2 (UK) Limited v Hutchison 3G UK Limited.

Reference for a preliminary ruling: Court of Appeal (England & Wales) (Civil Division) - United Kingdom.

Trade marks - Directive 89/104/EEC - Article 5(1) - Exclusive rights of the trade mark proprietor - Use of a sign identical with, or similar to, a mark in a comparative advertisement - Limitation of the effects of a trade mark - Comparative advertising - Directives 84/450/EEC and 97/55/EC - Article 3a(1) - Conditions under which comparative advertising is permitted - Use of a competitor’s trade mark or of a sign similar to that mark.

Case C-533/06.


Top of the page Documents in the Case
Document Date Name of the parties Subject-matter Curia EUR-Lex
Judgment (OJ)
15/08/2008 O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)
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Judgment (Summary)
ECLI:EU:C:2008:339
12/06/2008 O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)
Judgment
ECLI:EU:C:2008:339
12/06/2008 O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)
EUR-Lex text EUR-Lex bilingual text
Opinion
ECLI:EU:C:2008:63
31/01/2008 O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)
EUR-Lex text EUR-Lex bilingual text
Application (OJ)
10/03/2007 O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)
View pdf documents
Top of the page Legal analysis of the decision or of the case

Reports of Cases

2008 I-04231

Subject-matter

Interpretation of Article 5(1)(a) and (b) of Council Directive 89/104/EEC of 21 December 1988 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks (OJ 1989 L 40, p.1) and Article 3a of Council Directive 84/450/EEC of 10 September 1984 relating to the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States concerning misleading advertising (OJ 1984 L 250, p. 17) – Use of a competitor’s trade mark in an advertisement for the purposes of comparing the characteristics of the goods or services sold by advertiser with those of the competitor

Systematic classification scheme

1.
B European Community (EEC/EC)
  B-11 Approximation of laws
    B-11.07 Harmonisation of trade mark law
      B-11.07.03 Effects of a mark
B European Community (EEC/EC)
  B-11 Approximation of laws
    B-11.07 Harmonisation of trade mark law
      B-11.07.03 Effects of a mark
B European Community (EEC/EC)
  B-11 Approximation of laws
    B-11.07 Harmonisation of trade mark law
      B-11.07.02 Relative grounds for refusal
B European Community (EEC/EC)
  B-11 Approximation of laws
    B-11.07 Harmonisation of trade mark law
      B-11.07.02 Relative grounds for refusal


Citations of case-law or legislation

References in grounds of judgment

  • Directive 84/450 : paragraphs 5, 11, 31
  • Directive 84/450 -A01 : paragraph 7
  • Directive 84/450 -A02PT2BIS : paragraphs 8, 41, 44
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BIS : paragraphs 26, 68
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP1 : paragraphs 9, 27 - 29, 45, 50, 69
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP1LD : paragraphs 46, 48, 49
  • Directive 84/450 -A04 : paragraph 12
  • Directive 89/104 : paragraphs 10, 31
  • Directive 89/104 -A04P1LB : paragraphs 64, 65
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P1 : paragraphs 3, 23, 24, 27, 29, 32 - 34, 36, 37, 45, 51 - 68
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P1LA : paragraphs 28, 34, 52, 53
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P1LB : paragraphs 25, 28, 46, 47, 49, 50, 54 - 68
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P2 : paragraphs 32 - 34, 36, 37, 45
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P3LD : paragraph 32
  • Directive 89/104 -A06P1 : paragraph 4
  • Directive 97/55 : paragraph 5
  • Directive 97/55 -C2 : paragraph 38
  • Directive 97/55 -C3 : paragraph 38
  • Directive 97/55 -C4 : paragraph 38
  • Directive 97/55 -C5 : paragraph 38
  • Directive 97/55 -C6 : paragraph 38
  • Directive 97/55 -C13 : paragraphs 6, 39, 49
  • Directive 97/55 -C14 : paragraphs 6, 39, 49
  • Directive 97/55 -C15 : paragraphs 6, 35, 39, 49
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -342/97 : paragraph 58
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -425/98 : paragraph 64
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -112/99 : paragraphs 35, 42, 43
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -44/01 : paragraph 42
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -206/01 : paragraphs 55, 56
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -245/02 : paragraph 56
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -120/04 : paragraphs 47, 56, 58
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -48/05 : paragraphs 34, 55, 56
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -381/05 : paragraphs 42, 43
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -17/06 : paragraphs 55, 56, 59

Operative part

  • Interprets : Directive 84/450 -A03BISP1
  • Interprets : Directive 89/104 -A05P1
  • Interprets : Directive 89/104 -A05P1LB
  • Interprets : Directive 89/104 -A05P2

Opinion

  • EC Treaty (Amsterdam), Article 249 -L3 : point 18
  • Treaty of Nice 2001 - Protocol on the Statute of the Court of Justice -A23 : point 15
  • Directive 84/450 : points 1, 5, 6, 18, 28
  • Directive 84/450 -A02PT2BIS : points 6, 39
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BIS : points 6, 14, 17, 30 - 35, 39, 41 - 67
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP01 : points 7, 32
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP01LD : point 32
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP01LE : points 32, 45, 64
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP01LG : points 32, 47 - 51, 55, 58, 64
  • Directive 84/450 -A03BISP01LH : point 32
  • Directive 89/104 : points 1, 18
  • Directive 89/104 -A05 : point 3
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P01 : points 22, 24, 26, 39
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P01 : point 65
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P01LA : points 14, 16 - 28, 35 - 40, 67
  • Directive 89/104 -A05P01LB : points 12, 14, 16 - 28, 35 - 40, 67
  • Directive 89/104 -A06 : point 21
  • Directive 89/104 -A06P01 : points 4, 35
  • Directive 89/104 -A06P01LB : point 17
  • Directive 89/104 -A07 : point 21
  • Regulation 40/94 -A08P05 : point 65
  • Directive 97/55 : points 1, 5, 6, 29, 35
  • Directive 97/55 -C2 : points 29, 65
  • Directive 97/55 -C7 : point 30
  • Directive 97/55 -C11 : point 31
  • Directive 97/55 -C14 : points 33, 48, 52
  • Directive 97/55 -C15 : points 33, 44, 48, 52
  • Directive 97/55 -C18 : point 29
  • Directive 2005/29 : point 6
  • Directive 2006/114 : point 6
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -355/96 : point 18
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -63/97 : points 20, 25 - 26
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -112/99 : points 50, 53, 56 - 59
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -2/00 : points 22, 26
  • Court of Justice - Opinion C -44/01 : points 32, 54
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -44/01 : points 30, 32, 44, 55, 59
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -206/01 : points 23, -24
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -408/01 : point 18
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -245/02 : point 23
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -356/04 : point 59
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -48/05 : points 23, 25 - 26, 61
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -59/05 : points 55 - 58
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -381/05 : point 59
  • Court of Justice - Judgment C -17/06 : point 23


Dates

Date of the lodging of the application initiating proceedings

  • 28/12/2006

Date of the Opinion

  • 31/01/2008

Date of the hearing

Information not available

Date of delivery

12/06/2008


References

Publication in the Official Journal

Application: OJ C 56 from 10.03.2007, p.20

Judgment: OJ C 209 from 15.08.2008, p.9

Name of the parties

O2 Holdings ET O2 (UK)

Notes on Academic Writings

  1. Fhima, Ilanah Simon: Trade Mark Infringement in Comparative Advertising Situations: O2 v H3G, European Intellectual Property Review 2008 p.420-429 (EN)
  2. Idot, Laurence: Relations entre droit des marques et publicité comparative, Europe 2008 Août-Septembre Comm. nº 281 p.33-34 (FR)
  3. González Vaqué, Luis: El Tribunal de Justicia de las Comunidades Europeas precisa su jurisprudencia sobre el uso en la publicidad comparativa de un signo idéntico a una marca: la sentencia "O2 Holdings & 02 (UK)", Autocontrol 2008 nº 133 p.17-22 (ES)
  4. Blankenburg, Daniel: Neues zur vergleichenden Werbung, zur Verwechslungsgefahr und zur markenmäßigen Benutzung?, Wettbewerb in Recht und Praxis 2008 p.1294-1299 (DE)
  5. Hoogenraad, Ebba H.: Intellectuele eigendom & Reclamerecht 2008 p.218-220 (NL)
  6. Dudzik, Jarosław ; Skubisz, Ryszard: Używanie znaku towarowego konkurenta w reklamie porównawczej - glosa do wyroku ETS z 12.06.2008 r. w sprawie C-533/06 O2 Holdings Limited, Europejski Przegląd Sądowy 2008 Vol. 11 p.36-41 (PL)
  7. Namysłowska, Monika: Kolizyjnoprawne aspekty używania znaku towarowego konkurenta w reklamie porównawczej, Przegląd Prawa Handlowego 2008 Vol.10 p.16-20 (PL)
  8. Tavella, Massimo: Uso di segno distintivo simile a marchio nella pubblicità comparativa, Il diritto industriale 2008 p.487-491 (IT)
  9. Schumacher, Christian: Markenbenutzung in vergleichender Werbung, Ecolex 2008 p.1141-1142 (DE)
  10. Gamerith, Helmut: Verwendung einer fremden Marke bei vergleichender Preiswerbung, Österreichische Blätter für gewerblichen Rechtsschutz und Urheberrecht 2008 p.357-358 (DE)
  11. Sorreaux, Grégory: Publicité comparative: faut-il encore se soucier du droit des marques?, Revue de droit commercial belge 2009 p.362-368 (FR)
  12. : AIDA - Annali italiani del diritto d'autore, della cultura e dello spettacolo (Ed. Giuffrè-Milano) 2009 p.371-374 (IT)
  13. Alexander, Christian: Markenschutz und berechtigte Informationsinteressen bei Werbevergleichen, Gewerblicher Rechtsschutz und Urheberrecht 2010 p.482-487 (DE)
  14. Straetmans, Gert: Comparative Advertising and Use of Trade Marks: Confusion, Imitation and Unfair Advantage, Landmark cases of EU consumer law: in honour of Jules Stuyck (Ed. Intersentia - Cambridge) 2013 p.377-401 (EN)
  15. Gielen, Ch.: Jurisprudentie Intellectuele Eigendom 1953-2014 (Ed. 2015 Ars Aequi Libri, Nijmegen) 2015 p.136-139 (NL)



Procedural Analysis Information

Source of the question referred for a preliminary ruling

Court of Appeal (England & Wales) (Civil Division) - United Kingdom

Subject-matter

  • Approximation of laws
  • Intellectual, industrial and commercial property
  • Consumer protection

Procedure and result

  • Reference for a preliminary ruling

Formation of the Court

première chambre (Cour)

Judge-Rapporteur

Ilešič

Advocate General

Mengozzi

Language(s) of the Case

  • English

Language(s) of the Opinion

  • Italian