Brunswick Corp. v. Spinit Reel Co.

832 F.2d 513 (1987)

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Brunswick Corp. v. Spinit Reel Co.

United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
832 F.2d 513 (1987)

Facts

A division of Brunswick Corporation (plaintiff) manufactured and sold fishing reels. Spinit Reel Company (Spinit) (defendant) also manufactured and sold fishing reels and was founded by a former Brunswick employee. Brunswick and Spinit sold reels in the same marketing channels and were direct competitors. The district court found that Spinit had copied one of Brunswick’s spin-cast reels in violation of § 43(a) of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125. The court also determined that there was actual confusion among consumers and retailers. Brunswick submitted evidence that its sales of spin-cast reels had declined and that its sales of the reel that Spinit copied had declined by an even wider margin. In response, Spinit introduced evidence suggesting that the introduction of new reels to the market by other competitors might have contributed to Brunswick’s weak sales. Brunswick argued that it lost one sale of its reel as a result of each unit Spinit sold of the infringing reel. The district court issued an injunction but declined to award monetary damages, and Brunswick appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (McKay, J.)

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