The Court of Appeal has upheld a summary judgment claim in favour of the US Omega company, which objected to the Swiss Omega company’s opposition to the US company’s trade mark application in the UK. The US company said the opposition breached a trade mark coexistence agreement between the parties. The parties had entered into a coexistence agreement under which the Swiss company could continue use of the Omega name for its watch activities, and the US company could use the name for instruments and apparatus for measuring, signalling, checking, displaying or recording heat or temperature; and neither party would object to use by the other. The Swiss company opposed the US company’s trade mark application because it argued that the application should have only been in class 9 and not in class 14. However, the US company said that it could make the application in classes 9 and 14 as the coexistence agreement did not expressly deal with stating the classes.
The Court of Appeal has upheld the High Court’s decision to award summary judgment in favour of the US company. The purpose of the agreement had been to demarcate the field of goods rather than deal with the classes in which the goods could be registered. It was not necessary to imply a term dealing with this. The ruling will ensure certainty amongst contracts and in particular to give effect to coexistence agreements.