Hyderabad-based MagFast Beverages has won a legal battle against FMCG giant PepsiCo to use the trademark 'Mountain Dew'. MagFast Beverages Chairman Syed Ghaziuddin said that he had already started selling packaged drinking water with the name Mountain Dew way back in 2000. PepsiCo had not launched the beverage by the same name then.
"In 2000, I started a company to sell water to the people of Hyderabad as well as India. And that is when I started my idea of 'Mountain Dew' for my packaged drinking water. Due to the quality of the product, this brand name has reached national recognition," he told ANI.
Ghaziuddin said that by 2003, US-based PepsiCo had launched a soft drink product in India and named it Mountain Dew. "So PepsiCo started investigating and searching for water packages with the same name. PepsiCo Company filed a suit against our company in Delhi High court for infringement of their alleged trademark. But the Delhi High court refused their appeal and appointed an advocate commissioner. All my documents have been checked thoroughly by the advocate commissioner for the authenticity of the product," he said.
MagFast Beverages Chairman appealed to the Supreme Court to move the case to a Hyderabad civil court as he belonged to that jurisdiction. After he was allowed to fight the case from Hyderabad, the two parties fought for 15 years, he said. He said after the big showdown on December 31 last year, PepsiCo's claims were dismissed by the court.
He added that in 2004 PepsiCo had filed an undertaking stating that if they lose the case then the company will provide the required compensation to MagFast Beverages.
Commenting on the matter, PepsiCo India spokesperson said: "PepsiCo is the registered owner of the trademark Mountain Dew in India since 1985 and continues to be so. PepsiCo's trademark rights in Mountain Dew have not been affected in any manner due to the orders passed by City Civil Court Hyderabad. PepsiCo has been advised that it has strong grounds for challenging the orders passed by City Civil Court Hyderabad in appeal, both on facts as well as on law, and we are in process of filing the Appeal before the Hon'ble High Court."