Statements of Jeffrey A. Mitchell and Leigh M. Harlan, Senior VP, Secretary & General Counsel, Tiffany & Co.
October 5th, 2016
Tiffany and Company v. CostcoWholesale Corp., United States District Court, Southern District of New York (13 Civ. 1041) (Hon. Laura Taylor Swain)
Statement by Jeffrey A. Mitchell, partner, Browne George Ross, LLP
New York, NY, October 5, 2016: “As I told the jury in my closing argument, Tiffany is one of the most iconic and powerful trademarks in the world, and had no business being used by Costco to sell its own rings.
“The jury obviously sent a message to Costco by its award of punitive damages. Costco’s lawyer told the jury his client was taking responsibility for what it had done, but throughout the trial blamed unsupervised junior employees and small outside vendors for what had happened, even though the evidence suggested senior management knew about and had condoned Costco’s practice of using the Tiffany name for years.
“Hopefully, Costco will now get the message. It has a corporate responsibility to police its use of famous trademarks, and rather than continuing to pour money into legal fees defending the indefensible, it will finally resolve its dispute with Tiffany and put the money being spent on lawyers to better use.”
Statement by Leigh M. Harlan, Senior Vice President, Secretary & General Counsel, Tiffany & Co.
“The award validates the strength of the Tiffany trademark, the value of our brand and, most importantly, sends a clear and powerful message to Costco and others who infringe the Tiffany mark.”