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Rubik's cube as a trade mark

General Court of European Union, on November 25th, 2014, ruled on the request for cancellation of the registered trade mark in the form of the shape of the Rubik's Cube submitted by the company Simba Toys.

The factual grounds of the case was that the company Seven Towns registered an cube shape as a Community trade mark as “three - dimensional puzzle”. Several years later, the company Simba Toys applied for invalidity of the registered trade mark. The applicant indicated that the cube shape is necessary to obtain a technical result - a three-dimensional puzzle contains elements that can rotate around its axis - while it is not possible to register as a trademark shapes of goods that are necessary to obtain a technical result.

As Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market rejected the request for invalidity of the registered trade mark,  Simba Toys appealed to the Court of the European Union.

General Court of European Union, recognizing the appeal analyzed the article 4 of Council Regulation EC No 207/2009 of 26 February 2009, under which a community trade mark may consist of any sign capable of being represented graphically, particularly in words, including personal names, designs, letters, numbers, shapes of goods or their packaging, provided that such signs are capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one entrepreneur from those of other entrepreneur. Pursuant to the abovementioned regulation, the characteristics of the mark at issue consist of a cube and grid structure on each of the surfaces of the cube and not the ability of the rotation of vertical and horizontal strips. General Court of European Union found it clear that the registered trade mark of the company Seven Toys do not implicate the lack of possibility of the production of the three-dimensional puzzles by other entrepreneurs as long as it will be constructed in different shape and structure.

The judgment is not final, Seven Toys is entitled to submit an appeal to the European Court of Justice.

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