FOREO continues its successful fight against counterfeits & copy-cats
When it came to brand protection, 2020 was a significant year for FOREO. In late 2019, an unprecedented court ruling in Shanghai served the brand with compensation of RMB3 million, the largest counterfeit-related payout in design infringement in Shanghai Intellectual Property Court.
This enormous win not only boosted the brand’s efforts in the war against counterfeiters, but also set the tone for other brands who suffer from the same issue. According to the 2018 Global Brand Counterfeiting Report, worldwide losses from counterfeiting totalled 320 billion in 2017, with more than 80% of the world’s counterfeiting taking place in China. The amount of total counterfeiting globally has reached 1.2 trillion USD in 2017 and is bound to reach 1.8 trillion USD by the year 2020, which includes counterfeiting of all equipment and/or products from defense equipment’s to counterfeiting of watches.
Fighting counterfeiting is not only to protect the brand, but also to protect its customers – brands have no control over the quality of the counterfeits being produced and with less than stringent hygiene standards and factory conditions, counterfeits can no doubt be harmful to those who purchase them.
FOREO experienced a particularly positive year in fighting dupes and fakes, with 27,292 products, 70,170 accessories, 14,218 silicone cases and one silicone mould being seized. This case resulted in the raiding of 15 targets including three factories, 17 suspects detained and a compensation of RMB1,255,000.
Two more cases were also exported to Vietnam and Argentina, with 3,600 counterfeit products seized. In civil litigation cases, 87 targets were raided, with compensation of RMB2,997,700. Total compensation for brand protection for FOREO in 2020 amassed to RMB4,238,700.
This feat could not have been made possible without the support of the domestic China legal framework. On January 1, 2019, China’s new e-commerce law came into effect, which applies to e-commerce operators such as Taobao, third-party merchants and online vendors. The new law brings pressure to online retailers to fight counterfeit and copy-cat products, as well as giving protection to intellectual property.
“We are seeing major progress on IP protection in China and updated IP law grants the right holder to get more compensation with border protection scope. The judicial practice shows that the enforcement authority assists patentees to do copies-takedown. This makes us confident and secure in developing more innovative products in the future,” says Kelsey Tang, Global Legal Director, FOREO.
In order to protect its customers, FOREO issues a unique serial number on each product, which customers can then register on the warranty pages of www.foreo.com. FOREO looks forward to seeing another successful year ahead in the fight against counterfeit and copy-cat products.