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Patagonia Sues Gap For Allegedly Copying Its Snap-T Pullover Fleece and Logo

Patagonia, Inc. has filed a new lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for Northern California against Gap, Inc. for the allegedly infringing on multiple trademarks.

In the complaint, filed last week, Patagonia alleged that Gap is selling copies of its Snap-T pullover fleece that utilized a “highly similar” rectangular logo that resembles its “P-6” mountain skyline logo, first used in 1973. The outdoor company added in the filing that these Gap products are designed to “make it appear” as though Patagonia is the source of Gap’s products or has collaborated with Gap or authorized use of its trademark and trade dress.

Patagonia wrote in the complaint that Gap’s Infringements “mimic all elements” of the Snap-T trade dress and use a rectangular logo that, particularly in the context of the infringing trade dress, is “likely to cause confusion” among consumers about the source of the products or whether they are the result of a sponsorship by or collaboration with Patagonia.

“The Gap infringements have caused or are likely to cause dilution of Patagonia’s famous and distinctive mark by diminishing its distinctiveness and singular association with Patagonia,” the company said. “Given how derivative the Gap Infringements are of Patagonia’s original designs and logo, there is no question that Gap’s copying has been willful and deliberate.”

The company went further to highlight a Gap customer review left on the Gap.com website under the alleged infringed product. “I had to zoom in just to ensure that the logo was Gap,” the review said. “This is wild, why are you copying other brands, you have your own lane.”

Patagonia went on to state that unlike this one review, not all consumers will zoom in, either at point of sale or post-sale. “And even if consumers do zoom in, they are likely to believe this is one of Gap’s many collaborations,” the complaint said.

Ultimately, Patagonia is seeking damages and lost profits from Gap in an amount proven at trial. The B-Corp. also wants Gap to turn over all existing inventory of the alleged infringed product as well as prohibit Gap from further infringement on its products or logos.

This new claim follows Patagonia’s October trademark infringement, copyright infringement and unfair competition lawsuit against Walmart. In the complaint, Patagonia alleged that both Walmart and New York-based lifestyle apparel brand Robin Ruth USA produced and sold apparel bearing what Patagonia called “nearly identical” copies of its P-6 Trout logo and artwork, replacing the “Patagonia” trademark with the word “Montana.”

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