Focussing on prefixes

The above mentioned case GENOPHARM vs./ HEMOFARM shows that pharmaceutical trademarks can benefit from a dissimilarity of their prefixes when the suffixes are close but weakly distinctive.

The importance of prefixes – on which the consumers tend to focus – has once more been confirmed in an opposition involving the marks FINONIL vs./
TIMONIL.

On September 28, 2007, as opposed to the differences between the prefixes FIN / TIM, the presence in both signs of the final “NIL” (associated with the identical structure and the same number of letters) was considered by the Board of Appeal as insufficient to create a likelihood of confusion as ”NIL” has been deemed “rather common in the sector of pharmaceuticals and chemical preparations as can be inferred from a number of community trade marks registered in relation to these goods”.

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