Victory for US firm in trademark lawsuit

The Shanghai-based semiconductor maker Gotop has lost a trademark infringement lawsuit against the American chip maker Qualcomm, which has sought 100 million yuan in compensation.

The Shanghai-based semiconductor maker Gotop has lost a trademark infringement lawsuit against the American chip maker Qualcomm, which has sought 100 million yuan (US$15.17 million) in compensation.

Gotop, founded in 1992, makes a variety of computer components like video graphics card under the trademark of Gotop in English and Gao Tong in Chinese.

Qualcomm, which makes electric gadgets, entered China in 1994. It established its Chinese branch in 2001. For years, its products were sold under the Chinese name of Gao Tong. 

In 2010, Qualcomm applied to the Trademark Office of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, asking to revoke the Gao Tong trademark registered by Gotop. The request was approved and Gotop twice lost appeals against the decision.

So, Gotop turned to the Shanghai Higher People’s Court in 2014. The trial opened in May last year.

At the court, Gotop insisted that it had the right to make and sell products under both the Gotop and Gaotong names. It blamed Qualcomm for “maliciously” trying to confuse the two companies as it had tried to acquire Gotop.

Qualcomm claimed Gotop had lost its ownership and right to use the trademark. Also, the two companies make different products, and thus it had not violated anyone’s intellectual property.

The court ruled in favor of Qualcomm.


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