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FESI holds a bilateral meeting with EUIPO in Alicante

Tuesday, 20 September, 2016

Brussels, BELGIUM

FESI and EUIPO exclaim unanimity in fighting off IPR infringements


 Left to right: FESI Secretary General (Alberto Bichi), EUIPO Executive Director (Antinio Campinos), FESI Vice President and Chair of the IPR Working Commitee (Neil Narriman) and EU Observatory Director (Paul Maier).


On the 14th of September, a FESI delegation composed of FESI Secretary General (Mr. Alberto Bichi), FESI Vice President and Chair of the IPR Working Committee (Neil Narriman), met EUIPO Executive Director (Antonio Campinos), EU Observatory on Infringements of IPRs Director (Paul Maier) and EU Observatory  Deputy Director (Andrea Di Carlo). The meeting’s objective was to evaluate and strengthen FESI and EUIPO’s collaboratory efforts in combatting intellectual property rights infringements.

One issue discussed was the assessment and follow-up of the Anti-Counterfeiting campaign that FESI ran during the summer of 2016. The social media campaign entitled “Score the Real Thing” targeted youngsters, to raise awareness on the perils of purchasing counterfeits online. The initiative had the specific purpose of protecting Intellectual Property ahead of the EURO 2016 Football Championship in France and for that purpose FESI received financial support from EUIPO. Within this context, exchanges between FESI and EUIPO stressed the importance to voice concerns about the negative impact of IPR infringements at the highest possible level within industries both at national and European level, building on objective intelligence provided by EUIPO. The two organisations considered worth exploring, the possibility to organise customs training sessions in different Member States with the support of National Federations. In the same vein, EUIPO expressed its commitment to organise a high level conference involving all relevant stakeholders varying from industry and brand officials, to prosecutors and law enforcement authorities. FESI’s support for the identification of industry representatives in such an event was welcome. Moreover, it is considered relevant to increase the profile of IP protection around major sport events and to create a larger awareness among the European public, by vocalising the ins and outs of IPR infringements and through the testimonials of athletes.  

With the sporting goods industry being heavily affected by counterfeit products, FESI strongly applauds EUIPO's incentive to quantify IPR infringements in the sporting goods sector and also its willingness to continue with the publications of sectoral studies. To maximize the efforts of its partnership with EUIPO, FESI will continue to follow up strictly on IPR infringements by reporting cases studies of solved violations in the field of SMEs to the institution.

Overall, EUIPO and FESI concluded that it is imperative to work hand in hand on a regular basis as that is the only way forward. FESI Secretary General (Alberto Bichi) commented “By activating our network of experts and specialists we increase our capacity to effectively identify fraudulent cases and counter infringements. We are therefore determined to continue our joint efforts  with EUIPO and are filled with  enthusiasm by the progress we have made till now”.