Three sues rival Eircom over advertising campaign
THREE Ireland has sued Eircom Ltd, trading as Eir, over an advertising campaign which, it is alleged, refers directly to the Three brand and other Three trademarks such as "All you can eat data".
It claims the campaign, launched earlier this month, is directed towards Three's customers and, without providing substantiated calculations, claims those customers can save up to €480 by switching to Eir's mobile services packages. The advertisement deceives, or is likely to deceive, Three's customers into switching to the defendant by "grossly exaggerating" the savings to be made, if any, it is claimed.
Three alleges the advertisements are misleading within the terms of the EC (Misleading and Comparative Marketing Communications) Regulations Act 2007 for allegedly not comparing like with like.
Three also claims the campaign takes unfair advantage of the reputation of a trademark, trade name or other distinguishing marks of a competitor. Barrister Paul Coughlan, for Three Ireland (Hutchison Ltd) and Palmerston Ltd, applied to have the proceedings fast-tracked in the Commercial Court.
Maurice Collins SC, for Eircom, did not object to the case being fast-tracked, but said his side had comprehensively addressed the issues in correspondence with Three and took issue with the claim the campaign was misleading.
Mr Justice Brian Cregan agreed to admit the case.