Nike and Skechers, the number one and number two sneaker companies in the US, respectively, have been at odds in the past few months in regards to legal matters. This week, Nike has filed a lawsuit against Skechers for copyright infringement.
According to the complaint, Skechers’ Burst, Women’s Flex Appeal, Men’s Flex Advantage, Girl’s Skech Appeal, and Boy’s Flex Advantage sneakers have infringed on at least eight of Nike’s design patents. The Burst sneakers in particular resemble Nike’s popular Flyknit design.
The Oregon-based athletic company in its complaint alleges “Skechers intended to copy the designs covered by the NIKE Patents,” and the “overall appearance of the designs of the Nike patents and the corresponding designs of Skechers' infringing shoes are substantially the same.”
This lawsuit is Nike’s second suit against the Manhattan Beach footwear company. Nike sued for infringement on the Converse Chuck Taylor sneaker (Converse Inc is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nike). Skechers won a favorable ruling in that suit.
In the months prior, the company was in hot water after Adidas filed a lawsuit against the company for allegedly “knocking off” the Stan Smith sneaker. The Skechers sneaker style closely resembles the Stan Smith sneaker except for the placement of the perforations found on the side of the sneaker.
Nike is seeking a permanent injunction, which would put an end to selling the Skechers sneakers permanently.
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