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In April 2018, UKIPO rejected the trademark application of ChefUber. Tim Mackew applied for the registration of trademark ChefUber. It offers quality freelance chefs to the hospitality industry, placing the right people with the right jobs across the UK. It applied for registration of a trademark under class 35. The Uber Technologies Inc. opposed the registration under section 5 (2) (b), 5 (3), 5 (4) (a) and 3 (6) of the Trade Marks Act 1994.
- Under section 5 (2) (b), the opposition claimed that there is an identical similarity between the applied-for services and the goods and services of the earlier marks. Under section 5 (3), the opponent alleged that the use of the applicant’s mark would, without a due case, take unfair advantage of the opponent’s reputation and that there would be dilution and tarnishing.
- Under section 5 (4) (a), the opposition claimed that the use of the applied-for mark is capable of restraint under the common law tort of passing-off.
- Under section 3 (6), the opponent stated that the applicant must have been fully aware of the opponent’s reputation and with bad-faith used their goodwill.
- Class 35 includes advertising services related to the recruitment of personnel.
Uber Technologies Inc. as an opponent relied upon its EUTM registered Uber, UberX, UberEats, UberPool, UberRush, UberPop trademarks to oppose the ChefUber mark The opponent claimed that there is a conceptual similarity between ChefUber and UberEats because the word Chef is not distinctive in the word ChefUber.
In response to this, the application presented a counter-statement which stated that their services are not delivery services, so there lies no issue of conceptual similarity with U Further they added that there is already a UberChef in kitchenware sales so no reason existed to object ChefUber. The applicant also pointed out that no similarity is going to take place in the business sectors of the parties.
After hearing both parties The UKIPO pointed out that some similarity existed between the marks Uber and applied for mark ChefUber.The Court also said that an average consumer will assume that ChefUber is another branch of Uber. The opponent referred to certain goods and services in its specification that it considers being similar to that of the applicant. It stated that goods and services of class 35 contained the term “advertising” which consequently relates the advertising services applied for. The Court agreed with the opponent on this point and said that in business management services same trade channels will be used by both parties. Therefore, the Court observed that similarity lies upon this point. The Court further rejected the allegation of bad-faith and denied the prayer of tarnishing and dilution of services of ChefUber. On 12th August 2019, the UKIPO rejected applicant’s application of trademark and ordered the applicant to pay a sum of £2200 to Uber.