This blogger has come across a recent judgment from Uganda’s Commercial Court in Muse Af Enterprises Co. Ltd Vs Billen General Trading Ltd & 2 Ors  UGCOMMC 88. In this case, Muse filed an application for registration of the PANASUPER trademark in Uganda on 3rd August 2006 but the application was opposed by Matsushita Electronic Industrial Co. Ltd of Japan, the registered proprietors of Trademarks No. 25731 and 28536 PANASONIC. Since the registration of the trademark had been opposed, Muse requested a power of attorney from Linyi Huatai. The PANASUPER trademark was subsequently registered after URSB delivered a ruling disposing of the opposition of the trademark.
Later, Muse filed suit against Linyi Huatai and their local agent Billen for trademark infringement. However Linyi Huatai claimed that Muse had fraudulently registered the PANASUPER trademark in its own name. Linyi Huatai asked the court to cancel the registration of PANASUPER and claimed damages from Muse.
This blogger came across the recent judgment of the High Court in the case of Adventis Limited v Superior Homes (K) Limited & another  eKLR. At the heart of this case is Greenpark, a gated housing development with over 600 units off Nairobi’s Mombasa Road near Athi River. In 2004, Adventis was appointed by Superior Homes as lead Architects for Architectural work and services for Greenpark. Later, UK architectural firm of Young & Gault was roped into the project following the disaffection by Superior Homes with the services which were being rendered by Adventis.
The court established that Young & Gault was brought in as a go-between to supervise the work that was being undertaken by Adventis so that Superior Homes would be sure that it was getting the right worth of its money. Later, Superior Homes refused to pay Adventis for services rendered and the latter sued. Among the claims made by Adventis was that Superior Homes infringed the copyright in the architectural drawings by Adventis by converting it’s drawings and holding them out and publishing them for commercial purposes.
“In the circumstances of this case accordingly, it is difficult to understand how the Registrar of Trade Marks whether under Section 14 or 15 of the Act, arrived at his conclusions. The marks are clearly phonetically and visually different and are not similar or identical. The goods are by colour, shape and size different. The goods are by constitution not identical or similar. The likelihood of the goods being dealt with by the usual public is meagre. The possibility of a confusion arising therefore is also meagre.” – Onyancha, J on 25th day of May, 2015.
This blogger has recently come across the judgment in the case of Pharmaken Limited v Laboratories Almirall S.A  eKLR. A copy of the judgment is available here.
The background of this case is as follows: Pharmaken applied for registration of the trade mark “ZYRTAL MR” in class 5 for human medicine. The application was examined and later approved for advertisement. Almirall filed a notice of opposition to the registration of the mark. Almirall stated that it owns the trade mark number 39575 “AIRTAL” in class 5 which has become well known to the Kenya public. Almirall further alleged that the said application resembles their trade mark “AIRTAL” visually and phonetically and that confusion would arise in the mind of the public.
This blogger recently came across a judgment by the High Court in the case of School Equipment Production Unit v James Muhoro t/a Mamur Services  eKLR. In this case, School Equipment Production Unit (SEPU) claimed that it commissioned people including Muhoro, to develop for it a primary science kit which included a catalogue entitled “Primary Science Charts” consisting of “Weather and the Sky, HIV/Aids and Drugs and drug abuse.” The said primary science kit was presented to Kenya Institute of Education (who awarded the same an approved status. The Plaintiff therefore claimed that it had acquired copyright in the artistic work comprised in the catalogue entitled “Primary Science Charts (1) Weather and the Sky (2) HIV/Aids and (3) Drugs and Drug Abuse”.
SEPU contends that Muhoro infringed upon its copyright in the said works by causing to be registered in his name a copyright work under certificate No.000063 of the artistic work similar to the said works. SEPU therefore prayed for various reliefs including an injunction to restrain Muhoro from further reproduction and publication of the said works, cancellation of the registration of copyright No. CR 000063, general and exemplary damages.