Deckers, owner of popular footwear brand Ugg, has begun legal proceedings against sheepskin footwear brand Emu Australia, claiming infringement of its Ugg trademark.
Deckers filed a trademark infringement suit at the United States District Court in the Central District of California this week. It is seeking a court order to prevent Emu from using its trademarks.
The company has alleged that Emu has intentionally misled customers into believing they are buying an Ugg product.
Deckers chairman and chief executive Angel Martinez said: “The success of Ugg Australia has created an entire industry of companies that market their wares by deliberately confusing consumers. Emu’s trademark infringement is intentionally misleading consumers into believing they are buying a genuine Ugg Australia product when in fact, they are not.”
Dave Porter, chief operating officer at Emu Australia played down the lawsuit. He said: “The fact that Ugg Australia has filed a law suit against a company for misleading consumers makes us laugh down here in Australia.”
He added: “The truth is, “Ugg” is a generic word in Australia and there are over 70 registered trademarks in Australia and New Zealand that include the word “Ugg”.”