Wine in China: Castel spending ‘hundreds of thousands’ to protect brand

Wine in China: Castel spending ‘hundreds of thousands’ to protect brandOne of France's largest wine companies, Castel Freres, spends hundreds of thousands of euros annually to protect trademarks on its wine in China, according to one of its directors. A wine shop in China.Castel development director Jean-Baptiste Prot told Jane Anson for her latest Decanter.com column that trademark protection for wine in China continued to be a costly business for foreign wine companies.
‘We spend hundreds of thousands of euros each year on brand protection in China,’ Prot said. ‘It’s an ongoing battle and it’s not one that we always win, but we persevere.’
Copy wine is a often reported issue in China, if hard to quantify, but the ability of foreign wine chateaux and estates to secure trademark protection is also a recurring theme.
Complaint ongoing
Castel has been relatively successful at securing a foothold in China’s emerging wine market, but it remains in a legal dispute with a Chinese distributor over the Ka-Si-Te name, arguably one of the best known Chinese translations of Castel.
The case has been referred to China’s Supreme Court, and a 30m Chinese yuan fine (£3m) initially levied on Castel has been suspended pending a fresh hearing. The French group has global annual sales of around €1.1bn. Read more