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High Point (NC), U.S.
High-end French footwear designer, Christian Louboutin, has won a five year-long lawsuit against Dutch company Van Haren, which also produced shoes with a red sole; considered as a distinctive feature of the Louboutin fashion label.
Louboutin claimed to have registered a trademark consisting of the shape of the sole combined with the red colour, but Van Haren argued the trademark filed by Louboutin was void under European law.
In its judgment delivered on May 12, the European Court of Justice accepts that Louboutin’s claim that a specific shade of red on the soles of its shoes qualifies as a distinct and recognisable characteristic of the brand.
Therefore, Christian Louboutin maintains the exclusivity in Europe for red-soled shoes, with Pantone 18.1663TP; his famous "signature" recognised worldwide.
The French label has faced several legal proceedings, in France and abroad, in disputes with other brands that have marketed red soled shoes.
Sources: Footwear News/Le Point