[Eveready v Everyday] Delhi High Court grants ad interim injunction in favour of Eveready Industries for trademark infringement

Eveready Industries Injunction

Delhi High Court: A suit was filed by Eveready Industries India Limited, formerly, Ever Ready Company (India) Limited, (plaintiff) engaged in the business of marketing dry cell batteries, rechargeable batteries, flashlights and lighting products under the trademarks “EVEREADY” seeking interim injunction against KSC Industries (defendants). Sanjeev Narula, J., restrained the defendants from manufacturing, exporting, selling, offering for sale, advertising, or directly or indirectly, dealing with any goods/ packaging under the trademark/ label “EVERYDAY” or any other mark identical to or deceptively similar with the Plaintiff’s trademark “EVEREADY” that would amount to infringement and passing off of the Plaintiff’s registered trademark and copyright and unfair trade practice.

The plaintiff company has been using the trademarks “EVEREADY” and another unspecified mark (likely redacted) since 1905, through its predecessor-in-interest. Over the years, Eveready has built substantial goodwill and reputation associated with its products. The “EVEREADY” mark has become integral to the company’s corporate identity and trade name. Eveready has obtained trademark registrations for various versions of the “EVEREADY” word and device marks across different classes. Additionally, the company asserts copyright in the artistic works embodied in its logos. These trademarks and copyrights represent significant assets for Eveready, reflecting the company’s long-standing presence and dominance in the Indian market.

The case arises from the alleged infringement of Eveready’s trademarks by the defendants. Eveready contends that the defendants’ use of the mark “EVERYDAY” for electric gas lighters is deceptively similar to Eveready’s “EVEREADY” trademark. Upon discovering the defendants’ activities, Eveready initiated online searches and found evidence of the defendants’ business operations and trademark application. The defendants were reportedly selling electric gas lighters on the e-commerce platform Amazon.in under the name “Eveready Gas Lighter.” Eveready alleges that the defendants’ use of the “EVERYDAY” mark aims to exploit Eveready’s goodwill and reputation.

Eveready submitted that the defendants’ adoption and use of the “EVERYDAY” mark constitute dishonesty and an attempt to capitalize on Eveready’s market standing. They argued that the visual, phonetic, and structural similarities between the defendant’s mark and Eveready’s mark are likely to deceive consumers. Moreover, Eveready emphasized that their mark has been recognized as well-known, and thus, the defendants’ use of similar marks for related goods should not be permitted. Eveready also alleged violation of its copyright in the label/artwork associated with its products.

The conflicting marks are as follows:

Plaintiff Mark:

Defendant Mark

The Court conducted a comparison between Eveready’s mark and the defendant’s mark and found prima facie evidence of similarity. The Court noted that the adoption of the “EVERYDAY” mark by the defendants appears deliberate and aimed at riding on Eveready’s reputation. The similarities between the marks, including their visual, phonetic, and structural aspects, are likely to confuse consumers. Additionally, the court acknowledged Eveready’s well-established goodwill and reputation in the market, emphasizing the need to protect against infringement.

Thus, the court granted an ad-interim ex-parte injunction restraining the defendants from manufacturing, exporting, selling, offering for sale, advertising, or dealing with any goods under the “EVERYDAY” mark or any mark deceptively similar to Eveready’s trademark until the next date of hearing on 20-08-2024.

[Eveready Industries India Limited v. KSC Industries, 2024 SCC OnLine Del 2070, decided on 21-03-2024]

Advocates who appeared in this case :

Mr. Ankur Sangal, Ms. Sucheta Roy, Ms. Nidhi Pathak, Advocates for plaintiff

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