WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Louis Vuitton Malletier v. Julmax
Case No. D2000-1294
1. The Parties
A. The Complainant is Louis Vuitton Malletier, 2 rue du Pont Neuf, 75034 Paris Cedex 01, France (Vuitton).
B. The Respondent is Julmax, via della Pravetta 13, Cardano Al Campo, VA 21010, Italy.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The domain name in issue is:
The Registrar is Network Solutions, Inc.
3. Procedural History
The WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the Center) received the complaint on October 2, 2000. The request for Registrar verification was sent on October 16, 2000. The Center received the Registrar verification response on October 20, 2000. The notification of Respondent default was issued on November 21, 2000.
4. Factual Background
A. The Trademark
The complaint is based on the trademark Louis Vuitton. The Complainant is the owner of the following registered trademarks:
In France LOUIS VUITTON, registration number 1 627 892, November 16, 1990.
In the U.S.A. LOUIS VUITTON, N° 1990760, August 6, 1996.
The international trademark LOUIS VUITTON, N° R416052, since 1968, and renewed for the last time on June 19, 1995.
In the European Community, LOUIS VUITTON, N° 15610, April 1, 1996.
In Italy LOUIS VUITTON, N° 165162, February 18, 1982, and EPI, N° 2900, on October 27, 1994.
In addition the Complainant has registered the following domain names:
"louisvuittoncup2000.com", "louisvuittoncup2000.org", "louisvuittoncup.com".
B. The Complaint
The grounds for the complaint are:
That the domain name registered by the Respondent is confusingly similar with the name Louis Vuitton.
That the Respondent registered this domain name in order to prevent the Complainant from registering its domain name and that according to article 4(b)ii of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy this should be considered as evidence of bad faith.
That the adding of numbers which represent the year in which Louis Vuitton's Cup event shall take place does not reduce the likelihood of confusion.
C. The Respondent
The Respondent has not submitted any response.
5. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar Domain Name
The principal element of the domain name "louisvuittoncup2004" is identical to Complainant's trademark Louis Vuitton. The domain name is confusingly similar to the common law trademark Louis Vuitton's cup. It is correct to consider that in general the adding of numbers does not reduce the likelihood of confusion. It is certainly so when those numbers represent the year in which a recurring event takes place, and especially when the dates of that event are public knowledge.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests of Respondent
Respondent is in default. Therefore, it is not possible to find which legitimate interests it may have to the domain name in issue.
C. Domain Name Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The list of domain names registered by the Respondent is prima facie evidence of a registration in bad faith. Among those are "britishinstitutes.com", "britishinstitutes.net", "olympicgames.com" and "americascup2004.org".
Further, the Respondent has, in its behavior, prevented the Complainant from registering a domain name corresponding to its marks. As the Respondent is engaged in a pattern of such conduct as proven by the above mentioned list, this fact is to be considered as evidence of bad faith.
In the light of the foregoing, the panel decides that the domain name registered by the Respondent is confusingly similar to the corresponding trademarks of the Complainant, that the Respondent has no legitimate interests in respect of this domain name and that the domain name in issue has been and is being used in bad faith by the Respondent.
Accordingly, the panel requires that the registration of the domain name "louisvuittoncup.2004.com" be transferred to the Complainant.
Dated: January 9, 2001