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Domecq.Wine UDRP : It’s my family name for 250 years, says Respondent

The respondent in the Domecq.Wine UDRP is proud of his family’s name, a centuries old wine producer from Spain.

Pernod Ricard España, SA, filed the UDRP, on the notion that the Domecq name is trademarked.

According to the UDRP:

The Claimant is a Spanish mercantile belonging to the Pernod Ricard group, a world leader in the wine and spirits industry, operating through a wide portfolio of brands, including the DOMECQ brand acquired by the Claimant in 2005 This brand comes from Bodegas Pedro Domecq, SA, commonly known as “Bodegas Domecq”, whose trajectory goes back to the XVIII century, being one of the main wine makers of Spain, with a long tradition and renowned prestige.

If the Complainant owns the mark since 2005, to the Respondent, Pedro Domecq Marti, it’s a family name going back at least 250 years.

The passion with which the Respondent fends off the Complainant’s claims, is remarkably strong, and we’d like to include his entire response, translated from Spanish:

The domain name in dispute coincides with his first surname, is not part of his surname, but his first full surname, being a direct descendant of the founding family and holder of the Bodegas Pedro Domecq, SA, located in Jerez de la Frontera (Cadiz), which for almost 250 years made wines, marketed under various original brands created by their own family.

After the sale by the company’s family and its portfolio of brands to the British group Allaid Lyon and its subsequent transfer of the portfolio of brands to the Claimant, the latter has proceeded to the sale of said marks, created by its family and members of the Portfolio of Bodegas Pedro Domecq, SA to other competing companies, so that, at the moment, none of the products commercialized by the Claimant is identified with the brand DOMECQ.

It is striking that anyone who does not use the DOMECQ brand to label their wines even though they have registered it, claim the legitimacy of a brand that not only does not use, but has been responsible for discrediting through the indiscriminate sale of all brands of wines , Its floors and its buildings.

In fact, the DOMECQ brand enjoys great prestige, acquired thanks to the good work done by its family for almost 250 years, although since its acquisition by the Claimant, it has been less due to lack of investment in advertising and The sale and dispersion of the set of original brands belonging to the wineries of the Domecq family. So one of the most important Spanish winemakers has been destroyed by the voracity of multinationals and investment funds, in a sales and dispersion strategy that seems designed to make a competitor disappear.

The Domecq Bodegas, SL merchant has nothing to do with the original company of its family (Pedro Domecq, SA), being a merchant, based not in Jerez de la Frontera but in La Rioja, who constituted the Claimant and is currently Finds it extinct.

 The prestige and notoriety of the DOMECQ brand is not only due to the quality of the wines and brandy produced by the wineries of its family, but is intimately linked to the prestige of its family, recognized by monarchs, pontiffs and all Society, not only for the quality of its wines, but for its herds, horses and bulls of fighting, its charitable works and its stale ancestry that goes back to the fourteenth century, already recognized by the kings of France and French society in the Bearn , Where it comes from.

It is evident that the Domecq family is still linked to the wines and will always be, even if there are trademarks registered in the name of the Claimant, as the company will continue to relate its family to wines, bulls, Oak barrels, horses, etc., as the DOMECQ wine brand is notorious, but more so is the Domecq family and the Domecq family. In addition, there are other wineries in the family such as Álvaro Domecq, SL or Miguel Domecq, SL

Its intention to register the domain name in dispute is not in any way to make any kind of unfair competition to the Claimant. His claim is to tell the history of his family in relation to wines, which he considers interesting for the sector and for culture because it is part of the history of wines from Jerez, Spain and the world. His intention is to write the history of his family on a Web page related to what has always been related, the wine sector. He has not registered the disputed domain name for profit, but in good faith, for a cultural use for the dissemination of history and the defense of his family’s honor in relation to what his ancestors did. Bad faith would deprive him of the right to be able to tell the story of his family based on a trademark that is in disuse.

It is legitimate to tell the story of the Domecq under the disputed domain name and form a social network, if any, of the family, in relation to an important part of their history such as wines, since their surname and The family’s relationship with the wines, are prior to the registration of the DOMECQ brand, and even predate the company Pedro Domecq, SA, created in 1953, in which the former company, Pedro Domecq y Compañía, was transformed.

It does not need to create any link with the DOMECQ brand, it is already closely linked to it, because it is its own name. Domecq’s blood runs through his veins, as evidenced by his name and surname. On the contrary, it is the Complainant that continues to create a misleading link between the company that it created but subsequently extinguished, Domecq Bodegas SL and its entity, using the domain name <domecqbodegas.com> to redirect consumers to the page Web of Pernod Ricard.

The expert on this case, conducted in Spanish, delivered the following findings:

“[…] based on the allegations and evidence presented by the Respondent, the Respondent bears the surname Domecq as the first surname, appearing to be a direct descendant of the founding family of the wineries that gave rise to the DOMECQ trademark, now owned by the Claimant. The Respondent has also alleged that it intends to use the disputed domain name to tell its family history in relation to the wines.

The Domecq family, of which the Respondent appears to be a part, is well-known in Spain, mainly for its activity of elaboration and commercialization of wines and spirits, which goes back more than two hundred and fifty years, having produced high quality wines, Marketed through the brand DOMECQ and other brands, equally notorious, in the Spanish market.

Thus, as a result of the intense linkage that has taken place between them over the years, in the opinion of the Expert, not only the DOMECQ brand, but also the family surname and the Domecq family itself, are known at the level Nationally, have been and remain intimately related to wine.”

The UDRP thus denied the transfer of the domain Domecq.Wine, and you can view the entire decision, translated into English, or the original in Spanish.

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