Kyiv-based Rodovid Bank is challenging in court the ownership rights to the Medoff trademark that belongs to Domani Groupp LLC (Russia), which is under control of British financier Neil Smith, reads a press release of the businessman.
According to the report, on August 6, 2012, a hearing of the Higher Economic Court of Ukraine was scheduled for the case, but it was postponed.
The press release says that Domani Group acquired the right to the Medoff trademark in May 2011 from Soyuz-Victan Group Ltd. However, in September 2011 under a claim of Rodovid Bank, which said that the trademark is used as collateral at the bank, the trademark was arrested.
The press release says that Domani Group appealed to Kyiv Economic Court asking to cancel the arrest and collateral. The report says that on December 27, 2012 the court declared the absence of collateral rights of the banks for the Medoff trademark.
The press service of the British businessman said that the ruling of the court of first instance was upheld by Kyiv Economic Court of Appeals on March 7, 2012.
“However, for unclear reasons, on June 21, 2012 Kyiv Economic Court arrested the Medoff trademark. The justification was collateral agreement No. 79.1/36-3.2-07 of October 18, 2007, which was signed by Rodovid Bank with the previous owner of the brand – Soyuz-Victan Group – and was terminated in 2007,” reads the report.
According to the press release, Smith in 2011, via its investment company Eastern Beverage Company S.A. (Luxemburg) acquired Crimean Vodka Company, which also producers MEDOFF vodka.
Crimean Vodka Company also produces alcohol under Prirodnaya Kollektsiya, Nasha Marka, Khutorok, Mrnaya, Koktebel and Longmixer brands.
Crimean Vodka Company opened in 2009 at a rented plant in Simferopol, which was previously used by bankrupt vodka company Soyuz-Victan. The company produced 27 million liters of alcoholic beverages in January-August 2011.
Rodovid Bank was founded in 1990. The state obtained control over the bank during an anti-crisis recapitalization program.
Rodovid Bank ranked 24th among operating banks as of April 1, 2012, in terms of overall assets worth UAH 9.034 billion, according to the National Bank of Ukraine.