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IHT Internationale Heiztechnik GmbH v. Ideal Standard GmbH
European Communities Court of Justice
Case C-9/93 (1994)
Prior to 1984, the American Standard group held the trademark Ideal Standard for sanitary fittings and heating equipment. The trademark was held in Germany by American Standard’s German subsidiary, Ideal-Standard GmbH (plaintiff), and in France by American Standard’s French subsidiary, Ideal-Standard SA. In July 1984, Ideal-Standard SA sold its heating business and assigned the Ideal Standard trademark to Société Générale de Fonderie (SGF). The trademark that Ideal-Standard SA assigned to SGF related to France, Tunisia, and Algeria. SGF later assigned the trademark to another French company, Compagnie International du Chauffage (CICh). Neither SGF or CICh had any connection to American Standard. The assignment of the Ideal Standard trademark to SGF and then to CICh did not include the Ideal Standard trademark in Germany, which was still owned by Ideal-Standard GmbH. CICh manufactured heating equipment in France bearing the Ideal Standard trademark, and the equipment was marketed in Germany by Internationale Heiztechnik GmbH (IHT) (defendant), a subsidiary of CICh. Ideal-Standard GmbH sued IHT for trademark infringement. The regional court in Germany ruled for Ideal-Standard GmbH. IHT appealed the ruling, and the court referred a question to the European Communities Court of Justice for a preliminary ruling.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)
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