Skechers has taken out a half-page advertisement in the Los Angeles Times to address its latest legal battle with rival sportswear company, Nike. Skechers has come under fire recently after Nike again alleged the company had infringed on several of its sneaker designs. The two designs in question are the Nike Air VaporMax and the Nike Air Max 270.
The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Los Angeles earlier this month, with Nike alleging “Skechers’ business strategy includes copying its competitors’ designs to gain market share.”
In response, Skechers took out the aforementioned ad and directly addressed its competitors’ claims. In it, Skechers outlined which of its designs are targeted by the lawsuit and attempts to make clear that the lawsuit “merely contains Nike’s unproven allegations.” In addition, Skechers reiterated its support for its retail partners, whom it says it will “defend and indemnify” in the case that “Nike indeed tries to bully you too.”
Skechers continued by claiming the Swoosh “continues to use its vast resources to stifle competition in the courtroom rather than compete in the marketplace.”
This isn’t the first time Skechers and Nike have locked horns in the courtroom, nor is it the first time Skechers has taken out an ad to take shots at Nike. In April, Skechers took out a full-page ad in The New York Times’ Sunday paper after Duke’s Zion Williamson blew out his shoe in NCAA Basketball game against UNC Chapel Hill.
The ad featured a logoless sneaker that resembled the Nike PG 2.5 Zion wore in the game with the tagline “Just Blew It.”
Nike and Skechers have been engaged in lawsuits since as early as 2016, when Nike sued Skechers for the first time, claiming it had infringed on multiple Nike-owned patents.
So far, Nike has yet to respond. Read the Skechers ad in full below.
“Dear Skechers’ retail partner. We are hearing reports that Nike may be notifying some of our retail partners that styles from the following Skechers series infringe certain Nike designs: Skechers Skech-Air 92, Skechers Skech-Air Stratus, Skechers Skech-Air Blast, Skechers Skech-Air Atlas.
“As you may have heard, Nike filed a lawsuit against Skechers in Los Angeles alleging that those shoes infringe certain Nike patents. Please note that the lawsuit has been filed just recently and merely contains Nike’s unproven allegations. Skechers plans on defending the lawsuit vigorously and in response will deny that any of the listed styles infringe any of Nike’ patent.
“Skechers respects the intellectual property rights of others but our much larger competitor continues to use its vast resources to stifle competition in the courtroom rather than compete in the marketplace. Indeed, Skechers has been down this road with Nike before and Nike does not always prevail. In one case, the full United States International Trade Commission already ruled once that Skechers famous Twinkle Toes and Bob’s styles did not infringe Nike’s alleged trademark in the Converse Chuck Taylor midsole.
“More importantly, as far as our retail partners are concerned, please be assured that we stand one hundred percent behind all of our product offerings and would of course defend and indemnify your company if Nike indeed tries to bully you too.”
Stay tuned for updates regarding this developing story.
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