The Russian Patent and Trademark Office has ruled the ‘Black Friday’ trademark (held by Black Friday Ltd.) to not be cancelled. Thus, the objection filed by ‘M.Video Management’ company against legal protection of the brand has been denied.
‘M.Video Management’ stated that, as a major Russian retailer, it extensively uses the ‘Black Friday’ trademark to designate discount sales. The company’s representative also mentioned that the brand in question has been known in Russia long before the priority date of the trademark due to the large coverage by the media (the ‘Black Friday’ trademark has been registered by Black Friday Ltd. in December 2015).
However, the Russian Patent and Trademark Office has agreed with Black Friday Ltd., which stated that, as the business activities of the company covered by the trademark are different from those of the objector, no trademark infringement occurs.
It is always important to remember that Russia is a ‘first-to-file’ country in terms of the trademark priority. Thus, it is impossible to gain any legal protection solely on the grounds of the actual business use of the mark, as a legal priority date can be obtained by filing a regular trademark application with the Russian Patent and Trademark Office only.