The fast food chain in Ireland, Supermacs won a court battle to force burger giant McDonald’s to relinquish its “big mac” trademark in Europe.
The judgement from the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) found that McDonald’s had not proven genuine use of the contested trademark as a burger or a restaurant name.
The judgement opens the doors for the group to expand into other countries in the Europe. The company has a trademark protection for the Supermacs name in Ireland, extension of this trademark across Europe was contested by McDonalds.
Supermacs submitted a request to EUIPO to cancel the use of the “big mac” trademark that McDonald’s had registered. It argued that the trademark wasn’t put to it’s genuine use.
McDonald’s has said the the ‘Mac’ trademark was used in a “number of member states” and have evidence to show that mac was used in advertising and on the packaging of goods.
The EU body found that evidence submitted by McDonald’s was “insufficient” to establish genuine use of the trademark, thus resulting in its revocation.
The owner and founder of Supermacs, Mr McDonagh said the trademark represents a victory for small businesses all over the world.
In a statement issued by Supermacs on Tuesday, accused McDonald’s of “trademark bullying; registering brand names which are simply stored away in a war chest to use against future competitors”.
McDonald’s have a choice to appeal against this, but for now Supermacs can continue expansion plans in UK and Europe.