5 February 2019Trademarks

Skechers wants ruling that its shoe does not infringe Adidas TM

Footwear brand Skechers has asked a US court to declare that one of its shoe styles does not infringe Adidas’s three-stripe trademark.

The complaint, which was filed on February 2 at the US District Court for the Central District of California Western Division, said Adidas had demanded that Skechers cease all manufacturing, distribution, advertising and sales of its Goldie-Peaks shoe, which was released in 2018.

Adidas claimed that the shoe infringes and dilutes its famous three-stripe trademark.

In its argument to the court, Skechers claimed the accusations are “baseless” and said consumers are unlikely to be confused into believing the Goldie-Peaks shoe is associated with Adidas.

The filing comes shortly after Adidas allegedly sent Skechers a “notice of infringement” letter in November 2018. According to Skechers’ filing, Adidas demanded that Skechers provide sales data for the Goldie-Peaks shoe so that Adidas could “fashion an appropriate monetary demand”.

In its argument, Skechers said the Goldie-Peaks shoe “consists of one solid panel” formed by four colour segments, which “creates a very different visual impression” from the three, equally-spaced stripes that appear in Adidas’s trademark.

Skechers added that each of the four segments on its shoe was “a different, highly contrasting colour and has a different, highly contrasting finish, pattern and texture”.

The Goldie-Peaks maker said it is not aware of any style of footwear made by Adidas “in which the three-stripe mark’s stripes are rendered in contrasting finishes, patterns or textures”.

According to the filing, Adidas repeated its demands in a subsequent letter on December 20, 2018 and asserted that the “overall commercial impression” created by Skechers’ shoe is “sufficiently similar” to its three-stripe mark.

As evidence against this claim, Skechers submitted images of the box that the Goldie-Peaks shoe is sold in. The shoemaker said the box “prominently displays Skechers’ well known logos in multiple locations” and that it is not aware of any actual consumer confusion concerning the shoe.

According to Skechers, Adidas “operates in a crowded field of stripe designs”, and therefore its three-stripe mark is entitled to only narrow protection.

It gave examples of 24 footwear styles, released by brands including Gucci, Marc Jacobs, Tommy Hilfiger, Paul Smith, Miu Miu and Tory Burch which feature a panel of contrasting segments.

Skechers said the visual distinctions between the Goldie-Peaks shoe and the three-stripe mark are “especially significant in light of the numerous other companies” that produce footwear featuring contrasting segments.

It concluded that “given the profusion” of these similar designs, consumers are unlikely to believe the Goldie-Peaks shoe is associated with Adidas.

Did you enjoy reading this story?  Sign up to our free daily newsletters and get stories like this sent straight to your inbox.

Today's top stories:

IPEC praises Trump’s ‘significant efforts’ to protect American IP

Shopify tangled up in online payment patent suit

Monster Energy loses appeal against pizza eatery trademarks

Already registered?

Login to your account

To request a FREE 2-week trial subscription, please signup.
NOTE - this can take up to 48hrs to be approved.

Two Weeks Free Trial

For multi-user price options, or to check if your company has an existing subscription that we can add you to for FREE, please email Adrian Tapping at

More on this story

11 May 2018   Adidas has been given both good news and bad news in its trademark fight with Skechers as the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has upheld one preliminary injunction and reversed another.
19 June 2019   The EU General Court has upheld a decision that Adidas’ three-stripe trademark is invalid.
6 August 2019   Footwear brand Skechers has asked a US court to dismiss a trademark infringement suit over one of its shoe styles which Adidas had claimed infringes its three-stripe trademark.