News (#09 September 2019)


Ukrtelecom lost case to state-owned Oschadbank

Oshchadbank defended its position in the Supreme Court in a dispute with Ukrtelecom on the termination of a bonds sale and purchase agreement, the debt owed on which is almost UAH 1.5 billion.

The Supreme Court satisfied the cassation appeal brought by Oschadbank on the decision of Commercial Court of Kyiv of 27 September 2018 and the ruling of the Northern Commercial Court of Appeal of 18 February 2019 and cancelled decisions issued by courts of first and appeal instances on termination of the bonds sale and purchase agreement concluded between Oschadbank and Ukrtelecom.

The Supreme Court issued a new decision, which completely refused Ukrtelecom in satisfaction of its claim to Oshchadbank.

Court refused tolift arrest of assets of Ihor Kolomoisky

The Kyiv Court of Appeal refused the National Bank of Ukraine appeal to lift the arrest of assets belonging to the ex-owner of PrivatBank, Ihor Kolomoisky, and his companies.

This is the second decision in the claim against the Prosecutor Generals Office issued not in favor of the National Bank.

A reminder that Kolomoiskys assets were arrested by the claim of the Prosecutor Generals Office on 22 March. The arrest was imposed within criminal proceedings on a possible withdrawal of UAH 19 billion of refinancingprovided to PrivatBank by the National Bank before nationalization. The National Bank received these assets in a mortgage/pledge as collateral for the repayment of PrivatBanks debts for refinancing.
The main part of the seized property is the movable property of DniproAzot, the Nikopol Ferroalloy Plant, Pokrovsky (formerly Ordzhonikidze) and Marganetsk Mining and processing plant.

Also, a Boeing 767-300 aircraft, a number of apartments in the Dnipro Apartment complex Amphitheater, land plots belonging to the Gold coast resort in Odessa Region and the Bukovel ski complex are included in this list.

McDonalds lost right to TM Mc for some products

McDonalds has lost its exclusive right to the Mc trademark for some of its food products in the EU after a dispute with its Irish chain of fast food outlets.

The company Supermacs, which owns a hundred fast food restaurants in the Republic of Ireland, filed a complaint to the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO). EUIPO decided that McDonalds had not proved genuine use of the Mc prefix on certain products it was selling.

This is the second time this year that Supermacs has partially won a branding dispute in the EU.

However, the EUIPO upheld the right of McDonalds to owning the trademark Mc in the sale of chicken nuggets and some sandwich ingredients.

Since both companies have succeeded in some requirements in the case and failed in others, each party must pay its own costs.

Supermacs was founded by businessman Pat McDonagh in 1978, and is currently the largest Irish fast food company in the Republic of Ireland.

EUIPO has upheld McDonalds registration in the EU for the Mc trademark, standing apart for some of the main menu items that McDonalds uses in connection with its famous brand family with the Mc prefix. This decision does not affect McDonalds ability to use its trademarks prefixed with Mc or other trademarks in Europe and the world, and McDonalds will continue to protect its rights.

Supermac achieved this decision to be rendered after the branding dispute stopped attempts by Irish companies to expand the network of restaurants in the UK and Europe.

McDonalds won the previous battle for the similarity between the Supermac and the Big Mac names.

Supermac then asked EUIPO to render a decision on the issue, and the Irish company won a partial victory in January 2019.

At the time EUIPO ruled that McDonalds had not proved genuine use of the Big Mac trademark as the name of a burger or restaurant. The latest EUIPO ruling abolishes McDonalds automatic rights to use the trademark of the term Mc in a long list of food, beverage and restaurant services in the EU.

McDonalds argued that due to its long and continuous use of the term Mc, the brand became widely and exclusively associated with McDonalds among EU consumers.

But Supermac claimed that Mac was a very common prefix for surnames in Ireland, the UK, and other European Union countries.

Court postponed transfer of AVK factory to Ukrainian subsidiary of Russian bank

The Commercial Court of Donetsk Region postponed the transfer of an AVK confectionery factory to Prominvestbank till 13 December 2019. This refers to a court ruling under which Prominvestbank is allowed to recover property worth UAH 1.37 billion on account of a debt on a loan owed by AVK.

However, AVK claims that the immediate execution of this court ruling may lead to the enterprises bankruptcy.

The grace period will allow the company to restructure its debt by launching a production and logistics factory in Dnipropetrovsk Region.

Shell filling stations to be fined UAH 79 million due to anti-competitive practices

The Commercial Court of Kyiv City ruled to recover a fine of UAH 79.4 million for violation of antitrust legislation from Alliance Holding LLC (a filling station chain under the Shell brand).

It is noted that the fine was imposed on Alliance Holding in October 2016, as well as on another six filling station operators, which the committee accused of collusion. The company received the third biggest fine after OKKO and WOG.

Alliance Holding tried to challenge the ruling on the fines imposition in court. The proceeding lasted more than a year. However, in February 2018, the Supreme Court declared the companys appeal to be inadmissible. Following that, the AMCU appealed to the court with a demand to recover a fine and a delay interest.

In March 2019, the court began to re-examine the claim filed by Alliance Holding against the AMCU on cancellation of the fine due to newly-discovered circumstances. This process is ongoing and is at the appeal stage. Socar, OKKO, and WOG continue to challenge the AMCUs initial ruling.

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