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05.09.2012 " ", ", www.nplaw.ru
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Confectioners at Odds Over Soviet Chocolate Brand

Thefight forAlyonka between confectioners inthe two Russian capitals started when theFederal Anti-Monopoly Service prohibited theSt. Petersburg-based Krupskaya Factory fromproducing Krupskaya Alyonka chocolate. Moscow's United Confectioners, which had patented theSoviet Alyonka brand in1999, had complained that theproducts' wrappers were too similar. But now Krupskaya is striking back byproducing theMechta Alyonki (Alyonka's Dream) chocolate bar. Theconfectioner, which is owned byOrkla Brands Russia, has also filed anotice with theFederal Service forIntellectual Property toget rights toproduce other sweets under theMechta Alyonki brand, Marker.ru reported, citing Olga Agafonova, aspokeswoman forOrkla Brands. TheMechta Alyonki brand was registered byAzart, anOrkla subsidiary, in2003.

Sergei Lapin, apartner atNadmitov, Ivanov & Partners law firm, said that Krupskaya's use ofthe brand would not be inviolation ofthe antitrust ruling, but he added that officials could still decide whether this form ofthe name is acceptable. Thebattle forSoviet brands is gaining more momentum now, with companies also squaring off toget rights toold alcohol brands, as well as thefamous Vologda butter. Russia's entry intothe World Trade Organization has given local companies new mechanisms forgetting andprotecting intellectual property rights, which is helping tofuel thefight. "Now thelaw allows you tofight forSoviet brands andgives you asufficiently effective arsenal, which was not thecase inthe Soviet period," Lapin said. "So yes, it will become more important toregister one or another trademark foryourself toensure priority use and, if need be, use this trademark tobattle thecompetition."

:Moscow Times

 


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