Just one day after Skechers filed a lawsuit against Adidas, the Ninth Circuit has voted 3-0 to grant Adidas’ request to prevent Skechers from producing the Onix, a Stan Smith knockoff.
In February, a federal judge had granted a preliminary injunction that would bar Skechers from selling the sneakers, but Skechers appealed the decision to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. In a statement, Adidas said “we will not stand by and allow others to blatantly copy our products,” and that it was “committed to bringing a complete end to Skechers’ pattern of unlawful conduct” at trial.
Two-and-a-half years since the original lawsuit filed by Adidas in September 2015, the Ninth Circuit has finally granted Adidas’ request.
“The similarities between the Stan Smith and Onix are unmistakable,” reads yesterday’s filing. “Both shoes share the same white leather upper, a raised green mustache-shaped heel path, angled stripes with perforations, the identical defined stitching pattern around the perforations, and a flat white rubber outsole. Minor differences, including the use of Skechers’ logo, do not negate the overall impression of similarity between these two shoes.”
According to Sole Collector, Adidas claimed that Skechers sought to confuse their customers by using metadata tags to point online searches for the Stan Smith to its own Onix model. Although Adidas seems to have won the Stan Smith battle, the court voted 2-1 in Skechers’ favor over the Cross Court TR sneaker, which Adidas argued stole their iconic Three Stripes branding.
The full trial will reportedly take place on June 4 in Portland.
Skechers’ lawsuit against Adidas stems from the FBI probe into corruption within college basketball, and how Adidas employees allegedly conspired to give money to high school basketball players in return for their endorsement with the company one the turned pro. The suit claims that “illicit payments made by Adidas to denied competitors like Skechers who play by the rules a fair opportunity to compete for the cachet of having trend-setting high-school and college athletes seen in their products.”