Turf war over polo logo returns to court

The logos of Polo Ralph Lauren  and USPA
The logos of Polo Ralph Lauren (above) and USPA.
The logos of Polo Ralph Laurenand USPA.
The logos of Polo Ralph Lauren and USPA (above).

The battle is still on between fashion brand Polo Ralph Lauren and the US Polo Association (USPA).

The former is appealing against a June 2 ruling by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore that the USPA can go ahead and register a black-and-white trademark featuring two polo players on horseback and the letters USPA. The appeal was filed two weeks ago, with supporting documents submitted on Monday, and the appeal will be heard in the High Court.

Polo Ralph Lauren's lawyer Sukumar Karuppiah of Ravindran Associates told The Straits Times: "We disagree with the grounds of the decision, and will be appealing based on the similarity of the logos."

The American brand had earlier sought to block USPA from registering its logo in Singapore, saying it was similar to its own single player mark, registered here in 1996.

USPA - polo's American governing body - ventured into selling merchandise and registered its mark in Singapore in 2012 with the intention of entering the market.

When both logos were viewed in their entirety, she found USPA's logo and Polo Ralph Lauren's mark had "an extremely low degree of visual similarity".

The pre-trial conference for the appeal will be held on July 21, when a hearing date is also likely to be set.

USPA's lawyer Prithipal Singh of Patrick Mirandah said that they have been served the appeal documents and will be preparing for the case.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 15, 2015, with the headline 'Turf war over polo logo returns to court'. Print Edition | Subscribe