U.S. brand iPhone loses to Mexico’s iFone in court battle

Apple might have to give up 40% of its sales

U.S. brand iPhone loses to Mexico’s iFone in court battleiPhone5 on September 21st. EFE/Archive
iPhone5 on September 21st. EFE/Archive

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MEXICO. – A Mexican judge has denied an injunction by the company iPhone, that would have allowed them to sell more telecommunication products in Mexico under the iPhone brand name, in which it was established that the Mexican iFone company had those rights since 2005, said a close source to Efe yesterday.

The attorney for the iFone company Eduardo Gallastegui explained to Efe, that the 18th District Appellate Court that rules on Administrative matters made their final ruling last Thursday.

“This is the third time that Apple loses, and this shows legal evidence and truth that the iFone company is entitled to their right to use their name brand”, said the attorney.

In 2009 Apple sued iFone with the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI), in which Apple was trying to get iFone to stop using that brand name because the phonetic similarity can confuse users.

The suit was dismissed since the company iFone had registered the brand in Mexico since 2003, and Apple registered the brand until in 2007.

Since 2007 the mobile phone company Telcel started to sell the iPhone exclusively in Mexico, with unlimited use of internet service.

Now currently both mobile phone companies Telcel and Movistar announced that they will be selling the much anticipated iPhone5 here in Mexico as of November 2nd 2012.

The iFone company fist started business operations in 2002, but did not register the brand until 2003 with the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI).

This company provides software services to Call Centers, who has customers such as Axtel, Avaya, Maxcom and Microsoft.

Based on the decision by IMPI, Apple will be fined with 20,000 days of minimum wage to pay which amounts to about 96,000 dollars.

iFone at this moment is entitled to claim compensation for

damage caused for the invasion of its brand, and

may require for Apple to give them nothing less than 40% of its sales here in Mexico, according to current existing laws.

“The growth of the company was put on hold, due to the fact that the focus was now turned to defend their brand, which now we are presenting a law suit and requesting for compensation”, highlighted Gallastegui.

Editorial@sandiegored.com

Translation : Omar.Martinez@sandiegored.com

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