Supreme Court rejects Amazon’s appeal of targeting judgment

6 March 2024: The Supreme Court today gave judgment in Lifestyle Equities v Amazon, upholding the decision of the Court of Appeal. The judgment of Lords Briggs and Kitchin JJSC (with which the other justices agreed) held Amazon had infringed Lifestyle’s “Beverly Hills Polo Club” trade marks by targeting advertisements and offers for sale of goods bearing an identical sign from its US website to consumers in the UK and EU.


The trial judge, Michael Green J, had dismissed Lifestyle’s claim, but the Court of Appeal and now the Supreme Court, for similar but not identical reasons, concluded that the trial judge’s conclusion that advertisements and offers for sale were not targeted at consumers in the UK/EU was wrong.


The decision confirms the approach to targeting explained by the Court of Appeal in Merck, and Argos, is correct, and provides important guidance about the circumstances in which an appellate court is entitled to overturn multifactorial assessments made after trial.


Tom St Quintin, led by Michael Edenborough KC, instructed by Brandsmiths, acted for the successful respondents at all stages of the case.