JustFab has sued Fab.com on the grounds of trademark infringement. Filed late last month, the suit alleges that the defendant’s services have caused market confusion through similarities with those of the plaintiff.
Launched in 2010, the El Segundo, Calif-based JustFab operates as a subscription e-commerce site with a monthly membership fee of $39.85. Members of the site get access to unique footwear and accessories, as well as high-end fashions sold at bargain prices.
Spawned from the ashes of a gay social network, Fab.com has operated as an e-commerce site since 2011. Selling everything from apparel and furniture to art and food, the Manhattan-based site carries items from third-party sources and is open to everyone.
JustFab’s issues with its year-younger rival could have possibly been exacerbated by the two company’s overlapping plans to open retail outlets. As stated in court filings, the plaintiff has been readying a boutique in Glendale, Calif., as rumors persist of similar plans by the defendant.
The word “Fab” has appeared in several upstart brand names in recent years, but none have previously sparked litigation on any side. When it came to the children’s apparel site Fab Kids and the European footwear site Fab Shoes, JustFab simply purchased the underdogs. These moves have allowed JustFab to capitalize on name association while usurping new products and geographical markets.
Buyouts are easier when the competing brand is a smaller entity. Such is not the case with Fab.com, which currently boasts a $250m annual forecast on par with JustFab.
Remaining mum on the case for now, Fab.com simply states that it will defend its brand and products worldwide against any form of litigation.
JustFab’s General Counsel Matt Fojut counters that his company will vigorously defend its brand name and intellectual property while fighting to stem confusion that could likely be caused by similarly-named competing brands.