MARLENKA Wins Dispute with Dr. Oetker
8. December 2017, 13:29 | In November 2016 MARLENKA international s. r. o. found out that Dr. Oetker had launched a product (a powdery mixture for making cakes) called MARLENKA on the Turkish market and was selling it in all chain stores (e.g. Carrefour, Metro, etc.). In response to this finding, both the Turkish subsidiary of Dr. Oetker and the German headquarters were contacted in January 2017 and notified of violating the trademark rights of MARLENKA international s. r. o.
Although Dr. Oetker acknowledged the violation of MARLENKA’s trademark, they refused the company’s proposal for an out-of-court settlement pointing out that the name “MARLENKA” was of generic character in Turkey, i.e. that it was used for a certain kind of products generally and that it could not relate to any particular products of MARLENKA international s.r.o. Dr. Oetker threatened to submit a proposal for the invalidation of MARLENKA trademarks in Turkey.
During the negotiations, Dr. Oetker’s legal representatives were persuaded by MARLENKA’s legal representatives’ arguments that the name “MARLENKA” was not of a generic character, which ruled out their effort to invalidate MARLENKA trademarks in Turkey.
The negotiations of several months resulted in executing a settlement agreement and therefore the unauthorised use of MARLENKA trademarks was settled out of court. In this agreement, Dr. Oetker acknowledged the existence of MARLENKLA’s rights to its trademarks and agreed to do especially the following:
- not launch any MARLENKA products on the market
- buy MARLENKA products from specified chain stores
- pay MARLENKA international s. r. o. compensation of EUR 16,000
Dr. Oetker’s statement in the press:
Dr. Oetker confirms the agreement with Marlenka. “The problem was that ‘Marlenka’ is a general name for a certain kind of pastry in Turkey, which was why it was used for Dr. Oetker’s product for a short time. Our Turkish subsidiary was not aware of the fact that the Czech company had the name ‘Marlenka’ trademarked,” says Dr. Oetker’s German headquarter’s spokesman, Jörg Schillinger. He adds that the mutual agreement is acceptable for both parties and that Dr. Oetker is not offering the product any more.
The aforementioned was not the first case of MARLENKA’s trademarks being violated in Turkey. The previous cases were also settled amicably and out of court. The violators agreed to refrain from unauthorised use of MARLENKA trademarks.