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No longer happy with LV, counterfeiters set on Hermes

/ 09:27 PM August 29, 2011

The number of fake Louis Vuitton (LV) products in stalls at the Greenhills Shopping Center (GSC) has dropped by 60 percent as counterfeiters shift to Hermes.

According to a report LV country representatives filed with the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines, there have been fewer sightings of fake LV items at GSC, unlike before when imitation products proliferated in the popular Greenhills tiangge areas.

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“Hermes has replaced LV, but IPOPHL has not received any complaint from Hermes. We need a complaint from Hermes so that we can include it in the regular monitoring,” said Chester Arturo Cinco, of the IPOPHL secretariat.

More than 20 brand owners have submitted affidavits to IPOPHL, signifying their intent to be more vigilant in protecting their brands.

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Six brands were initially pulled out from GSC stalls on Dec. 14, 2010, following a letter of request that IPOPHL director general Ricardo Blancaflor sent to GSC administrator Catherine Ko.

The brands included LV, Gucci, Sanuk, Fitflop, Nike and Breitling.

A number of other brand owners followed suit, including Lacoste, Levi’s, Oakley, Puma, Chloe, Dunhill, Lancel, Bulgari, A. Lange & Sohne, Cartier, Montblanc, Panerai, Baume & Mercier, IWC, Jaeger-Le Coultre, Piaget and Vacheron Constantin.

Cinco said in an earlier interview that IPOPHL and the brand owners themselves conducted monitoring activities at the GSC to ensure that counterfeit versions of their products would no longer be sold at the commercial center.

Brand owners provided regular monitoring reports to IPOPHL, Cinco said.

IPOPHL sent a similar request to the management of 168 Mall to weed out counterfeit items being sold there, but there had been no response.

“But we will try a different avenue. This time, the letter will be addressed to 168 Tenants Association Inc.,” Cinco said.

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In an earlier interview, Blancaflor said he had directed mall owners and administrators to weed out sellers of counterfeit items among their tenants if they did not want to be criminally charged.

“Mall owners will also be criminally liable if they’re found to be aiding and abetting the sale of counterfeit and pirated goods,” Blancaflor had said.

Hoping to be stricken off the anti-piracy watch list of the US government, local authorities earlier swept malls and shopping areas deemed “notorious” piracy havens by the United States Trade Representative Office.

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TAGS: Business, Counterfeit, Greenhills Shopping Center, Hermes, Philippines, piracy
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