M&S and Aldi – ‘Caterpillar-gate’ round 2?
5th January 2022 by Edwina Bones
M&S are at loggerheads with Aldi for the second time. After ‘Caterpillar-gate’ (M&S’s claim that Aldi’s Cuthbert the Caterpillar was a direct copy of its beloved Colin), it has now taken action against Aldi’s light-up Christmas gin liqueur.
Both gins feature a bell-shaped bottle, edible gold flakes and are sold in a variety of fruity flavours, as noticed by the media and social media. M&S has used this as evidence of it being ‘strikingly similar’. Aldi’s version is £6 cheaper.
M&S has interestingly sought to rely on the designs it registered earlier in 2021. Design rights are often overlooked method of protecting an organisation’s products but can in some instances be a very useful method of protecting your intellectual property, and they can be relatively cheap to register.
M&S is seeking an injunction to prevent Aldi from infringing its designs, asking that it surrenders or destroys its stock and pay M&S damages along with costs. Aldi has rejected requests to stop selling these items. We will have to wait to see who wins this particular battle.
This is a useful reminder to ensure that you are protecting your intellectual property where possible, and that one product may be capable of being protected via a number of different types of intellectual property (including trade marks, copyright, designs and patents).
If you would like any advice on how to protect your intellectual property then please contact Edwina Bones at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01202 377824.