Online travel firm MakeMyTrip has filed a case against EaseMyTrip in Delhi high court over trademark infringement. In the complaint, EaseMyTrip has been accused of taking advantage of “makemytrip” adword with Google to come on top while searching on it.
Notably, Google also has been dragged in the legal suit by the NASDAQ-listed firm. The search giant may have to appear in court to explain its stand.
The malpractice of diverting traffic on the internet forced MakeMyTrip to spend more for adwords. Industry experts assert that the bidding on brand raises the cost per click on Google platform by up to three-to-four times.
The competition for promoting brand also reflected in MakeMyTrip’s last fiscal where it generated a turnover of Rs 2,759 crore, while it had to spend around Rs 3,320 crore for brand promotion.
Earlier this month, officials of MakeMyTrip have also taken the matter to the government in a recent meeting with Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).
According to an ET report, MakeMyTrip had sent a cease and desist notice to EaseMyTrip in September 2018 but it did not respond to it and has continued using the ad-word “makemytrip.”
The matter is scheduled for hearing in Delhi High Court for May 8.
This is not the first case of trademark infringement via Google adwords amongst consumer internet companies. In November last year, Delhi High Court had ordered China’s Bytedance to stop using “ShareChat” as an ad-word on Google after a complaint by the Indian company.
Google already has been blamed in certain cases. While CCI imposed a penalty of Rs 136 crore on search engine firm for unfair business practices in Bharat Matrimony (now Matrimony.com), the antitrust watchdog rejected similar allegations against the search engine in a case filed by Vishal Gupta and Albion InfoTel (informants) back in 2014.
Last year, Delhi HC had slapped notice to some firms for misusing Snapdeal trademark in fraudulent schemes. It also directed web hosting firms such as Go Daddy and Endurance Domain Tech LLC and Wild West Domian LLC to suspend infringing domain names.