IPKenya has come across this letter in the papers by Seven-Up Bottling Company based in Kenya warning other companies to cease and desist from importing Pepsi-Cola soft drinks from “other” sources.
The subject of the letter reads: “RE: Sale and Distribution of Trade Mark Products of PepsiCo” and it states in part:
“It has come to our attention that many importers/traders have been importing, selling and distributing trademark soft drink beverages of PepsiCo Inc. and Seven-UP International in the Kenyan market. This letter serves to inform you that SBC Kenya Ltd (Seven-Up Bottling Company Kenya Ltd) is the only company authorised by PepsiCo Inc. & Seven-Up Bottling Company Kenya Ltd to sell and distribute soft drink beverages known and sold under the trademarks Pepsi Cola and Mountain Dew in Kenya.”
IPKenya thinks that this is a strategy that ought to be employed by more large trademark owners operating in Kenya especially given the increasing cases of counterfeiting. In addition, last year the Competition Act of 2009 finally came into force and such a legislation may also play a role in ensuring that there is fair competition among all the players in the bottling industry.