Imabari Files Opposition in China

Recently a Chinese baby goods company registered the trademark “Imabari”, and the Japanese city of Imabari as well as the Imabari Towel Industrial Association filed oppositions in China to this registration.

Because “Imabari” is the name of a local government in Ehime prefecture, and “Imabari Towel” is a regional brand which boasts having the best towel production in Japan, the city of Imabari and the Imabari Towel Industrial Association believe that the origin of “Imabari Towel” is well-known in China. Moreover, the Imabari Towel Industrial Association has already registered the trademark “Imabari Towel” in China and other places in the world. Thus the two groups feel that if the trademark of “Imabari” is allowed and inferior goods are circulated, then the brand image of their towels will decline.

The parties expect to receive notice of acceptance or rejection in August from the State Intellectual Property Office.