Unitalen assists American Watts in successful protection of its "W Device" trademark

February 6, 2015

The American Watts Water Technologies Inc. was established in 1874, which is the world's leading manufacturer and service provider of innovative water products, focusing on four application areas of commercial and residential water, water recycling and water supply and drainage, HVAC and gas, and water quality control, with reputation of "valve standard-setter" in the world. Watts (Shanghai) Management Co., Ltd. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Watts Incorporation registered in mainland China, with authorized exclusive license to the use of "W Device" trademark of Watts in China.

In August 2013, Shanghai Watts received vendor reports from Beijing that a lot of castings with "W" trademark of Watts had flowed into Beijing Beigao Valve Co., Ltd., which was likely to produce a large number of valve products infringing related registered trademark of Watts Incorporation. Watts Shanghai engaged a third party to investigate this. In May 2014, it made a complaint to the local Administration for Industry and Commerce (AIC), and accompanied the AIC officials to raid the plant of Beijing Beigao Valve Co., Ltd.. However, the right holder could not provide the application for international trademark registration in time due to the upgrade of trademark system, which resulted in delay of providing ownership evidence in compliance with the requirements of general formality by the authorities, which further led to delays of decision and punishment of the infringing party by the relevant administrative investigation.

At the end of September 2014, Watts Shanghai officially commissioned Beijing Unitalen Attorneys at Law for the lawsuit to protect its rights. Unitalen promptly assigned Mr. Yan Chunde, Ms. Wang Heshu and Ms. Xu Yanmei to form a case team to actively push forward the case with an effort to overcome actual difficulties of slow trial process during the period of adjustment of the whole court system and in seizing products and obtaining related evidence from the authorities. In December 2014, a favorable judgment of infringement by the accused made by the first instance court has been received, safeguarding the legitimate rights and interests of Watts’ "W Device" trademark.