When we mention the brands Gudang Garam and Gudang Baru, what exactly crosses your mind? Is it their product? Or their brand names which are rather identical? Or maybe, the constant Intellectual Property feuds between the two corporations?
The two corporations do sell the same product, which is cigarettes. But that’s not the only identical thing about them. There are also their brand names, the pictures that represent their brands, their cigarette packs are also quite similar. All things considered, their similarities could cause confusion to consumers.
Consumers who want to buy Gudang Garam cigarettes could potentially buy Gudang Baru cigarettes instead. That potential, no matter how big or small, is detrimental to the company founded by Tjoa Jien Hwie, better known as Surya Wonowidjoyo .
That is exactly why Gudang Garam filed a lawsuit against its competitor at the Surabaya Commercial Court. Gudang Baru is not the only one under fire here, the Kediri-based corporate also sued the Directorate General of Intellectual Property (DGIP).
In 2021, the Surabaya Commercial Court granted part of Gudang Garam’s lawsuit. That decision required DGIP, which at the time was Defendant 2, to cancel Gudang Baru from the brand list.
Not only that, DGIP was also required to refuse the registration of other brand names that are still related to certain brand names, such as Gudang Baru, Gudang Baru Origin, or Gedung Baru. If the application for any of the prohibited brand names were to be granted, the brand would be considered null and void by law.
The decision which was made on August 30, 2021 crossed out and prohibited Gudang Baru as a brand. The cigarette company, alongside DGIP, were required to pay court fees which amounted to Rp. 3.109.000,-.
However, it seems Gudang Garam’s many victories in the same feud are not enough to end the clash between the two companies.
Gudang Baru Files Cassation
Ali Khosin, the owner of Gudang Baru, is not satisfied with the decision made by the Surabaya District Court in favor of Gudang Garam in the trademark dispute. Ali claims his company already holds the intellectual property legally.
Gudang Baru then requested a cassation on September 9, 2021. The cassation file was sent to the Surabaya District Court on December 31, 2021. Based on the Surabaya District Court Case Investigation Information System, the case is still in the status of ‘Submission of Cassation Files’. However, it was reported that the cassation file had arrived on January 24, 2022.
Citing detik.com, Ali Khosin and his company will maintain the brand, even though the Surabaya District Court has declared, through their decision, that they have violated Gudang Garam’s Intellectual Property.
About Brands in Indonesia
In Indonesia, trademark is regulated in Article 1 of Law Number 20 of 2016. In this article it is stated that a trademark or brand is a sign that can be displayed graphically, in the form of images, logos, names, words, letters, numbers, and color arrangements.
The graphic is displayed in the form of two or three dimensions, sound, hologram, or a combination of two or more of these elements to distinguish goods and/or services produced by persons or legal entities in trading activities.
In the same Article, number 2, it is stated that “Trademarks are marks used on goods traded by a person or several persons jointly or by legal entities to distinguish them from other types of goods.”
The article above provides a fairly specific explanation that a brand is something unique from a company to distinguish its products from other brands. Brands are not only about names, but also pictures, colors, letters, numbers, and so on.
All of these components when combined will give birth to a brand that represents the product of the entrepreneur or company. For example, when imagining Gudang Garam cigarettes, the company’s paintings, colors, and text come to mind.
Because a brand describes or represents the existence of a product in the community, therefore it must be unique and different. Two or more similar brands can cause harm to the parties concerned and also consumers.
Loyal consumers of a product may choose another brand because of these similarities. Companies whose brands are imitated will also suffer losses because they lose consumers.
The identity of the company is as important as the product or service it offers. This is because a brand that already has a name and is trusted by the public will definitely be sought after by consumers. This is the importance of protecting and defending brand as trademark.
If you have needs related to brands or other forms of intellectual property, please do not hesitate to contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org.