Official Journal of the European Union

C 175/23

Request for a preliminary ruling from the Fővárosi Törvényszék (Hungary) lodged on 18 March 2014 — Iron & Smith Kft. v Unilever NV

(Case C-125/14)

2014/C 175/28

Language of the case: Hungarian

Referring court

Fővárosi Törvényszék

Parties to the main proceedings

Applicant: Iron & Smith Kft.

Other party to the proceedings: Unilever NV

Questions referred


Is it sufficient, for the purposes of proving that a Community trade mark has a reputation within the meaning of Article 4(3) of Directive 2008/95/EC to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks (‘the Directive’), (1) for that mark to have a reputation in one Member State, including where the national trade mark application which has been opposed on the basis of such a reputation has been lodged in a country other than that Member State?


May the principles laid down by the Court of Justice of the European Union regarding the genuine use of a Community trade mark be applied in the context of the territorial criteria used when examining the reputation of such a mark?


If the proprietor of an earlier Community trade mark has proved that that mark has a reputation in countries other than the Member State in which the national trade mark application has been lodged — which cover a substantial part of the territory of the European Union — may he also be required, notwithstanding that fact, to adduce conclusive proof in relation to that Member State?


If the answer to the previous question is no, bearing in mind the specific features of the internal market, may a mark used intensively in a substantial part of the European Union be unknown to the relevant national consumer and therefore the other condition for the ground precluding registration in accordance with Article 4(3) of the Directive not be met, since there is no likelihood of detriment to, or unfair advantage being taken of, a mark’s repute or distinctive character? If so, what facts must the Community trade mark proprietor prove in order for that second condition to be met?

(1)  Directive 2008/95/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October 2008 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks (OJ 2008 L 299, p. 25).