Blog: Leonie BarrieWhat’s in a name?

Leonie Barrie | 12 November 2009

Just as it appeared to be turning the corner at the end of a dismal year of tumbling sales and profits, quirky shoe maker Crocs now seems to have another battle on its hands.

With cruel timing, it emerged in a recent filing that German car maker Porsche is suing it for alleged infringement of the ‘Cayman’ trademark – which not only appears on one of its sports cars but is also the name of Crocs’ best-known style of clogs.

Crocs says it plans to “vigorously defend” itself against the claims – but with sales and profits only just starting to recover from a $185m loss last year this is likely to be an unwelcome and expensive diversion as it tries to steer a turnaround of its business.

Bloggers have been quick to dismiss Porsche’s action as petty, pointing out that there’s not much chance of confusing Crocs’ $30 Cayman sandal with the $51,000 Porsche Cayman.

One even had the temerity to write: “The most ridiculous thing about this suit is that Crocs is a far superior product than the Porsche Cayman. I've worn Crocs and driven a Cayman; the Crocs are way more comfortable.”

And where will Porsche draw the line? Maybe it’d like to take on the Cayman Islands too?

But there’s also a sense of déjà vu here as well. In the same Form 10-Q filing Crocs lists no less than 12 lawsuits it has filed accusing firms of patent and trade infringement. As they say, what goes around comes around.


Ethiopia unrest a sourcing risk?

Fashion retailer H&M and UK based glove and leather manufacturer Pittards both say they are monitoring the situation in Ethiopia closely after the country's government declared a state of emergency af...


Asia facing up to increased competition

Increasing competition for garment sourcing contracts is seeing China not only being challenged by other countries in Asia, but by sub-Saharan African and even Russian suppliers too. And it is pushing...


Cambodia raises garment worker wages

The monthly minimum wage for workers in Cambodia's textile, garment and footwear sector is set to rise to $153 from January next year, following a vote on the issue last week. The increase marks a ris...


Sportswear initiatives start to take shape

The results of two highly-anticipated initiatives in the sportswear sphere were revealed last week: the launch of Under Armour’s new UAS lifestyle brand and the first pair of running shoes created at ...

just-style homepage

Forgot your password?