Spain’s Highest Court decides to hear Bacardi appeal in Havana Club rum case
July 22, 2009
Hamilton, Bermuda, July 22, 2009 — Bacardi Limited, the largest privately held spirits company in the world, today announced the Supreme Court of Spain has decided to hear its appeal in the case involving trademark rights to the Havana Club rum brand. The decision by the Spanish Supreme Court is a critically important and successful step in the case, as the Court is highly selective in what cases it reviews.
Bacardi, Jose Arechabala, S.A. and members of the Arechabala family sued Havana Club Holding, Havana Rum and Liquors, S.A., Cubaexport, and the Republic of Cuba in 1999 in Madrid’s Court of 1st Instance No. 54 to invalidate the Cuban entities’ transfer of the registration of the Havana Club trademark in Spain from Jose Arechabala, S.A.
Bacardi owns the rights to the Havana Club rum brand, having purchased the trademark from the original legal owners, creators and proprietors of the brand. The Arechabala family created Havana Club rum in 1935 in Cuba and subsequently sold their rum in Spain and other countries. In 1959, the Arechabala’s Havana Club brand and other assets were confiscated by the Cuban government without compensation. In the early 1990s, Cuba signed an agreement with French-based Pernod Ricard to exploit the confiscated brand globally through a joint-venture called Havana Club Holding.
Bacardi looks forward to full review by the Spanish Supreme Court.
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About Bacardi Limited
Bacardi Limited is the largest privately held spirits company in the world and produces and markets a variety of internationally recognized spirits. The Bacardi Limited brand portfolio consists of more than 200 brands and labels, including: BACARDI rum, the world’s number-one selling rum; GREY GOOSE vodka, the world leader in super premium vodka; DEWAR’S Scotch whisky, the number-one selling blended Scotch whisky in the United States; BOMBAY SAPPHIRE gin, the fastest-growing premium gin in the world; CAZADORES blue agave tequila, the top selling premium tequila worldwide; MARTINI & ROSSI vermouth, the world leader in vermouth; and other leading brands. For additional information, please visit www.bacardilimited.com.