HomeShoppingRituals wins "ritual" trademark case against The Body Shop - DutchNews.nl

Rituals wins “ritual” trademark case against The Body Shop – DutchNews.nl

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A Rituals store in Antwerp. Photo: APK via Wikimedia Commons

Dutch personal care products firm Rituals has won its appeal against a lower court decision not to order The Body Shop to pay damages for using the word “rituals” in its Spa of the World product line.

In 2022, Rituals won its lower court case against the British company, which had used “relaxing ritual”, “revitalizing ritual”, “blissful ritual” and “firming ritual” to describe various products in its spa range since 2015, alleging trade mark infringement. 

The court ruled that the words ritual and rituals are often used to describe personal care products but that in the case of The Body Shop, the word was used frequently and with a capital letter. 

“It could be the case that Rituals lost market share and will continue to do so” because of the “confusion”, the lower court said. 

That court said The Body Shop did not have to pay damages to Rituals but the Dutch firm disagreed and went to appeal. Appeal court judges have now said Rituals did have the right to damages which will be decided in a second court case.

They also ordered The Body Shop to pay €35,000 in Ritual’s legal and research fees. 

The Body Shop, founded as an ethical beauty firm in the 1970s, had 2,500 shops worldwide at its height but is now in financial difficulty and several units, including the German company, have recently filed for bankruptcy.

The British arm went into administration earlier this month, just three months after being taken over by private equity group Aurelius.

The BodyShop Benelux told RTL Nieuws earlier this month the 27 shops in the Netherlands will remain open but referred all other questions to the UK headquarters. According to the Chamber of Commerce, the Dutch operation is part of the UK arm, RTL said.

Rituals, set up by a former Unilever manager in 2000, booked sales of €1.7 billion last year. 

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