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Gucci owner agrees to drop lawsuit against Alibaba, collaborate on fighting fakes

French luxury group Kering, which owns brands including Gucci and Saint Laurent, has agreed to withdraw its 2015 lawsuit against Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba as part of a broader collaboration between the two companies to fight the sale of fakes online.

The companies will create a joint task force and take action – both online and offline – against violators in order to provide the best consumer experience and a trusted environment.

As part of the agreement, the lawsuit Kering filed against Alibaba and Alipay, an Ant Financial subsidiary, in the US district court in New York last year has been withdrawn.

In a statement, the two companies said the partnership represents a milestone in both parties’ investment and efforts to protect brands’ intellectual property rights.

“The companies have established a joint task force with the purpose of collaborating fully, exchanging useful information, and working closely with law enforcement bodies to take appropriate action against infringers of Kering’s brands identified with Alibaba’s advanced technology capabilities,” the statement said.

Kering and its brands will continue to “vigorously enforce their intellectual property rights” against individuals and third parties responsible for the production, distribution and sale of unauthorised materials in China and throughout the world.

“This agreement reflects the parties’ firm belief that taking proactive measures and using advanced technology will help law enforcement bodies and other relevant authorities address the challenges of intellectual property infringement,” the statement concluded.

A version of this story first appeared on sister site, Inside Retail Asia.

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