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    Trademark dispute: Daily Basket latest rival to face BigBasket fire

    Trademark dispute: Daily Basket latest rival to face BigBasket fire

    Trademark dispute: Daily Basket latest rival to face BigBasket fire
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    By Mugdha Variyar   IST (Updated)

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    As long as any e-grocer—other than BigBasket—mentions the word ‘basket’ in their name, lawyers for BigBasket will never be short of work. Recently, BigBasket issued a cease and desist notice to Coimbatore-based Daily Basket on using the term ‘daily’ and 'basket’.

    As long as any e-grocer—other than BigBasket—mentions the word ‘basket’ in their name, lawyers for BigBasket will never be short of work. Recently, BigBasket issued a cease and desist notice to Coimbatore-based Daily Basket on using the term ‘daily’ and 'basket’.
    This is not the first time the company has opposed trademarks with the term ‘basket’, and, interestingly, this is also not the first time BigBasket has opposed a ‘Daily Basket’ trademark filing.
    In fact, the company very recently had opposed a trademark filing for ‘Daily Basket’ filed by another entity based in Delhi, data from the trademark registry shows.
    According to data compiled by New-Delhi-based trademark lawyer and patent attorney Rahul Dev, there have been at least 20 such instances in recent years where BigBasket has filed an opposition to trademark applications that sought to use the term.
    The company, that is set to be acquired by the Tata Group, has filed opposition to trademarks such as ‘Wow Basket’, Smart Basket’, Fresh-o-Basket, and even a trademark application for only the term ‘basket. Many of these applications were filed around retail services, food products and groceries, as specified by the Class’ of the goods and services.
    Some other trademark applications that BigBasket has opposed include ‘Kitchen Basket, ‘Bada Baskets’, ‘Budget Basket’ and others.
    To be sure, these are trademark applications that are published in public journals to seek public feedback and it is common practice for other companies and individuals to file oppositions.
    In case of the earlier ‘Daily Basket’ trademark filing, BigBasket filed its opposition in October 2020, to the application that had been filed in February 2017, by a Delhi-based entity Artex Foods, and was published for public review in a journal in June 2020. The filing was under ‘Class 31’, which refers to fresh fruits and vegetables.
    The status of this application on the trademark registry only shows as ‘Opposed’.
    Importantly, Daily Basket founder Ramesh Vel told CNBC TV 18 that the company, which launched operations in August 2020, had applied to file a trademark for ‘Daily Basket’ but got a rejection.
    “We had applied for a trademark before launching our operations, after we found that a previous application had been abandoned. But we were rejected. I don’t remember the exact reason but I think it was because it was a common name,” Vel said.
    BigBasket did not respond to specific queries regarding its previous opposition to trademark filings.
    In a statement on the controversy with Daily Basket, BigBasket issued a statement saying:
    “While checking the trademark registry, we recently came across a filing for ‘Daily Basket’, which, in the context of the online grocery business, is a combination of two of our registered trademarks ‘BigBasket’ and ‘BB Daily’.”
    “The very purpose of the trademark registry is to put trademark applications in the public domain for 60 days, so that companies with existing trademarks may raise objections, if any. The typical next step in such cases is to send the relevant company a notice, which is exactly what we did.... We intend to work with the founder of DailyBasket to resolve this amicably, while at the same time protecting our brand and trademarks,” the statement read.
    Trademark attorney Dev said that it was a common practice in the industry to oppose trademark applications with similar terms.
    “Trademark strategy includes overall steps taken by brand owners for filing as well as enforcement of trademarks. These steps also include sending cease and desist notices to potential infringers, as well as opposing similar trademarks that can create confusion in the mind of consumers,” Dev said.
    The BigBasket vs DailyBasket case
    Online grocer BigBasket sent a cease and desist to Coimbatore-based grocery startup dailybasket.com last week, claiming that dailybasket is operating an e-commerce business offering identical products and services using a ‘conflicting similar domain name’. BigBasket has claimed that the mere use of the word basket could be ‘perceived and understood to be as emanating and connected from or having a nexus’ with BigBasket. It further alleged that dailybasket.com has deliberately copied the layout and getup of BB’s website.
    BB has asked dailybasket.com to stop using its domain name and transfer it to BB for free, discontinue its mobile apps and also pay BB Rs 2 lakh to cover the legal notice.
    “Your use of the word ‘daily’ along with ‘basket’ does not make your name distinctive, and our client strongly believes that you have dishonestly adopted the name and mark “dailybasket” to make your name and mark deceptively and/or confusingly similar to our client’s brand BigBasket,” the cease and desist notice states.
    “By using the said mobile App, you are malafidely trying to create an impression that you are associated with BigBasket for Coimbatore, which in fact, is not the case,” the notice further states.
    Dailybasket.com is a bootstrapped grocery startup founded by Ramesh Vel in August 2020. According to Vel, the company aims to set up mini supermarkets across Coimbatore and use them as delivery hubs to deliver grocery online. It is set to open its first store on February 25, and is currently operating one warehouse.
    Responding to the legal notice, dailybasket.com has claimed that BigBasket is bullying the startup with the legal notice, and that using the word ‘basket' in its brand, and delivering groceries online doesn't mean it copied BB’s trademarks or unethically copied its website and apps. “We never misuse BigBasket's brand in any way as they claimed in the cease and desist letter. That's a blatant lie,” the Coimbatore-based startup said on a website ‘bbisabully.com’.
    (Shilpa Ranipeta contributed to this story)
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