Burberry has reportedly filed a trademark infringement suit against a Korean underwear manufacturer Ssangbangwool (“SBW”) over copying the brands’ trademark check pattern. The lawsuit, filed in Seoul, claims that SWB’s underwear infringes Burberry’s trademark. The British company is seeking 100 million South Korean Wons ( about £55,ooo) in compensation and demanding that the items be pulled from the market.
According to the Korean Herald, Burberry Korea issued a warning against SBW for infringing its trademark rights in early January when the local underwear maker sold a range of men’s boxers with the check patterns under the brand TRY. When the items continued to appear on the marketplace, Burberry filed suit.
This will be the 18th lawsuit filed by Burberry in Korea since 2011. The company has held a trademark right for its iconic check pattern at the Korean Intellectual Property Office since 1998. However, the brand continues to struggle against the tide of counterfeits that has been sweeping through Asia in recent years. Burberry was the fourth most frequently counterfeited brand after Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Gucci, according to a customs service report last year. In an attempt to crack down on counterfeits, the Korean National Assembly have even passed a bill offering rewards for reports of counterfeiting!