Maxima Legal’s lawyers have helped protect a fashion industry player from unfair competition

Maksim Ali - Senior Associate

ANSE, one of the largest players in the fashion industry in the Russian faux fur market, instructed to Maxima Legal to protect its clothing designs that a competitor had misused. Maxima Legal lawyers helped the client prove the unlawful use of original designs. The Federal Antimonopoly Service has ruled that Goodwill’s actions amount to unfair competition. It was found that the company and its affiliates intentionally introduced coats which reproduced the design of ANSE’s products. The matter is rare for the Russian fashion sector – the dispute paves the way for financial sanctions against the violator.

Maxima Legal’s lawyers conducted a “test purchase” of goods from the competitor, gathered evidence of Goodwill selling similar products from faux fur, and filed a complaint with the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service. As a result, an antitrust lawsuit was filed against Goodwill.

In the course of the proceedings, Federal Antimonopoly Service managed to collect additional evidence, for example, testimonies of Goodwill’s former partners, production, the market for the sale of disputed goods, as well as information on social network traffic and ANSE’s revenue decline due to the appearance of the unfair competitor.

All of these materials can be used not only in the framework of the initiated antitrust case, but also for Goodwill to file an independent claim for damages or to recover compensation for violation of ANSE rights.

In addition, the Federal Antimonopoly Service found that Goodwill’s representatives repeatedly provided deliberately false information during the dispute, which led to the violator incurring administrative liability.

Following the trial, the Federal Antimonopoly Service ruled that Goodwill’s actions constituted unfair competition. At present lawyers at Maxima Legal are assisting with a commercial case in an effort to have the court to approve of the Federal Antimonopoly Service’s decision, as well as preparing documents to recover damages and compensation.

Mariya Koshkina, founder of the ANSE brand, notes: “Among Russian law firms, few specialize in dispute resolution in the fashion industry. It is difficult to prove a fashion design infringement. We turned to Maxima Legal, taking into account their experience in resolving disputes and advising designers well-known in Russia and abroad. The Maxima Legal team justified the trust we placed in them. Today we have already achieved excellent results and continue cooperation, I can fully rely on their expertise.”