Athletic clothing brand New Balance has filed a lawsuit against the owners of Nautica – Authentic Brands Group – for alleged design patent and trademark infringement.

According to the documents filed by New Balance, Nautica’s most recent product line, which includes shoes and polo shirts, carries a block N logo, which would not only infringe the brand’s own logo trademark, but also confuse potential consumers.

New Balance has the trademark for the block N logo, which according to them is among one of its “most valuable assets”, and as such they believe Nautica’s infraction “evidences an intent to free-ride on New Balance’s famous brand.”

In addition, the company is also accusing Nautica of infringing the design patent of its 247 shoe with their own Packer model, which they claim is “substantially the same” and no “ordinary observer” would be able to tell the difference.

In this sense, New Balance is asking the court to order the recall all Nautica products displaying the block N logo, as well as an injunction barring any infringement of its trademarks and design patent.

The opinions expressed in Brands+ Intelectual Property Newsare the sole responsibility of their authors and may not coincide with those of the media.

Sofia Vanoli