Home – New Forums Other discussions Legal(ish) question re licensed product

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  • #991461
    saray
    Member
    • Total posts: 11
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    Hi all,

    Hoping someone can assist me with this and I’ve put it in the right forum! For the past 4 years I’ve been the licensed distributor for a footwear product (a shoe insert with an adhesive backing similar to Party Feet but not quite) in Australia and NZ. Due to other commitments and that fact I don’t feel the Licensor has reasonable expectations about the minimum quantities I would need to sell to maintain the license (among other issues) we have agreed to terminate the agreement in May. Initially it was December however they kept extending it presumably due to not having any other options in Australia. They also quite willingly took the money I paid for stock while I continued to order it.

    Quick background, the product name is trademarked in Australia however due to the fact the name is meaningless and I thought not very good I have trademarked my own name and built a website around that with the actually product name being secondary. I could easily remove the licensed name and trade under my own name with a similar product. I also built a website based on my name that I trademarked. It is a high ranking website now thanks to a lot of work on my part. In fact on a lot of searches it ranks higher than the licensed company’s one.

    I still have some stock left – not a lot (400 units) – and I also wholesale to other retailers including online sellers.

    I’ve now received a letter from the licensor saying that as part of the agreement termination I need to destroy any existing inventory (that I’ve paid for!), instruct any resellers to do the same and take down my website. None of which I’m willing to do! Every single lead was generated by myself, every bit of publicity, every sale was via me. They have provided the product and I’ve done everything else (including the packaging)

    While the original agreement does state that upon termination of the license the trademark is no longer able to be used my understanding of that was in an ongoing manner, not an immediate destruction of inventory.

    I have a few questions:

    1. Given they sold me the product are they in a position to ask me to destroy it or do they have to buy it back?
    2. Can they demand that I instruct other retailers to destroy the product?
    3. Provided I remove reference to their IP is there any reason I would need to remove my website?

    Any help would be hugely appreciated!!

    Cheers,
    Sara

    #1181645
    Dave Gillen – Former FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 2,566
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    Hi Sara,

    Just checking to see if you sorted this out. Sounds like they are being ridiculous, so I hope you’ve come to some agreement.

    Dave

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