May 2018. Following a conflict lasting nearly nine years, Mars (owner of m&m’s) and Kraft (owner of Marabou) finally seem to have buried the hatchet in a dispute that has been playing out in Sweden.
In use since 1957
Hostilities erupted in 2009, when Mars first launched m&m’s on the Swedish market. Kraft filed an opposition on the grounds that m&m’s was too close to the M brand sold by its subsidiary Marabou, which had been in use in Sweden since 1957 and was registered in 1993.
Out of court settlement
After a series of costly court cases, Mars appeared to have lost the war in 2016 when the Swedish Patent Court ruled that m&m’s was infringing Marabou’s trademark rights. The eye-watering claim for damages exacted by Kraft in the wake of the judgement has now presumably persuaded Mars to propose an out of court settlement. The exact terms of the agreement haven’t been disclosed.
Source: Tom Kronhöffer and Viktor Westerberg, Ramberg Advokater KB, Stockholm