Interflora wins intellectual property battle to protect their trademark name online

Interflora has won a lengthy High Court battle against Marks & Spencer for infringement of their intellectual property. M&S were accused by Interflora that they were using their name as part of the M&S Google advertising campaigns, so that when users typed in the word “Interflora” they were presented with an M&S advert. Interflora argued that the adverts were misleading and as a result the business, which should have gone to the Interflora network, was redirected to M&S. Prior to 2008, when the lawsuit began, Google did not allow companies to bid on keywords that were other businesses trademarks. However, this was changed in 2008 and restrictions were removed, giving M&S the opportunity to begin using the Interflora name. Rhys Hughes, president of Interflora British Unit, said: “This ruling helps ensure that when consumers search on the internet for ‘Interflora’, they can be confident in knowing that the flowers bought online come from a member of the Interflora network.” The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.  Setfords Solicitors are a national full service law firm, with intellectual property solicitors in Birmingham and across the country.