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Stella McCartney Wins "NUDE" Fight Against Ali Hewson

Aug. 21 2009, Published 1:46 p.m. ET

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Fashionista Stella McCartney will launch her own fashion line STELLANUDE this weekend after beating U2 star Bono’s wife Ali Hewson in a copyright court battle, can reveal.

Hewson owns a company called Nude Brands Limited (NBL) which had a European Community Trademark on ‘NUDE’ in capital letters.

And she requested an emergency injunction to stall release of the perfume pending a full trial on trademark infringement.

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But Justice Floyd ruled in a London that an injunction blocking STELLANUDE’s launch risked causing massive disruption and would cost millions of pounds to the business of McCartney and her licensee YSL Beaute Ltd – part of L’Oreal cosmetics group.

He said: “I have come to the conclusion that the balance of injustice in this case requires me to refuse the injunction. It seems to me that, in this particular case, the likely damage to SML and L'Oreal if an injunction is wrongly granted outweighs the damage to NBL if it is refused. The effect of an injunction wrongly granted against SML would be to cause a massive disruption to their business, and probably cause them to abandon use of the brand altogether.”


Around £4.1million worth of STELLANUDE has already been manufactured for worldwide distribution.

Kirsten Gilbert, a partner at intellectual property firm Marks & Clerk Solicitors, said the potential damage of stopping the launch would hurt McCartney much more.

He told the Daily Mail Newspaper in the UK: “The fact that the new McCartney perfume has a similar look and feel to the rest of her well-known perfume range substantially reduces the likelihood that a purchaser will be confused into thinking STELLANUDE is anything other than a McCartney product.

“A failed injunction of this sort is a useful early indicator of how full proceedings might play out, and would typically result in a settlement.”

A full trial of the action - unless the parties settle in the meantime - is expected to be heard next year.



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