Beauty Union is a young, innovative manufacturer of cosmetics and accessories. When the airlines restricted the amount of liquids that could be carried on-board, Beauty Union developed small perfume bottles that could be carried in handbags, and could be refilled from the more customary larger perfume bottle and be brought into the aircraft cabin. Beauty Union applied for patent protection for this idea and started manufacturing and globally distributing the small perfume bottles under the trade name “Travalo”.
The huge success of the small Travalo perfume bottles quickly attracted numerous imitators. Websites and brick-and-mortar stores started offering exact copies at a fraction of the original product’s retail price, which threatened the sales and the success of Beauty Union. In this early stage, patent rights had been applied for, but had not yet been granted by the patent offices. Initially, therefore, there were not many effective legal remedies available to fight the deluge of counterfeits.
During this critical phase, BOEHMERT & BOEHMERT took over the representation of Beauty Union’s European patent applications. We were able to have one key patent granted successfully and quickly in an expedited examination procedure. On this basis, a Europe-wide strategy against the numerous patent infringers was developed and implemented. We coordinated the countermeasures with the help of a close network of correspondent attorneys in various European countries. With a targeted mix of negotiations, warnings and some legal measures against obnoxious infringers that took into account the economic requirements, we were able to free the European market from imitator products quickly, efficiently, and at a reasonable cost. At the same time, we monitored large on-line trading platforms all over the world and had imitator products blocked there.