Collective Brands Wants Adidas Ruling Overturned

Kansas City, Mo. Collective Brands Inc. (the company resulting from the merger of Payless Shoe Source and Stride Rite) has filed a motion seeking to have a court set aside or reduce a $305 million judgment against it for what a jury said was unlawful use of the Adidas three-stripe logo, according to the Associated Press.

A federal jury in Oregon last week ordered Collective Brands to pay $305 million in damages to Adidas AG.

The verdict stemmed from a lawsuit that Adidas filed in 2001 against Payless ShoeSource for selling shoes that Adidas said violated the trademarked three-stripe logo. Payless changed its name to Collective Brands last year.

Collective Brands filed papers on Monday asking U.S. District Judge Garr King in Portland, Ore., to reverse the award or order a new trial in the seven-year-old infringement case, the company confirmed Tuesday.

"We believe that the jury’s verdict was unjustified and excessive, and that we have strong grounds to have the jury’s verdict overturned or reduced," Collective Brands CEO Matthew E. Rubel said in a note to shareholders.

Paul Ehrlich, general counsel for Adidas North America, said Adidas has been building its brand for more than 60 years and that the verdict underscores the importance of protecting consumers from unfair and deceptive practices.

Collective Brands said the judgment was 15 times more than the profits made on the shoes.

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