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Italian clothing maker defeats Apple, wins rights to use 'Steve Jobs' trademark

The founders of an Italian clothing company operating under the name of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs have won the rights to continue using that branding, in spite of a long-running Apple legal challenge.

Image Credit: La Repubblica Napoli

Image Credit: La Repubblica Napoli


Vincenzo and Giacomo Barbato first adopted the name in 2012, when they realized that Apple had never trademarked "Steve Jobs," according to La Repubblica Napoli, cited by The Verge. Apple launched a subsequent lawsuit, specifically attacking the company's logo, which features a "J" with a bitemark and a leaf.

An Italian court has ruled that the "J" is distinctive from Apple's logo, as the former isn't edible and thus its bitemark can't be stealing from Apple's design.

Image Credit: La Repubblica Napoli

Image Credit: La Repubblica Napoli


The Barbatos are working on a number of Jobs-branded products, such as jeans, t-shirts, and bags. Talking to Business Insider Italia, the pair noted that they eventually want to ship electronics, which could put them in more direct conflict with Apple.

The company normally has little trouble in preserving its trademarks, with some notable exceptions. Last year for instance it lost exclusive rights to the term "iPhone" in China, thanks to a battle with leather goods maker Xintong Tiandi.