As Tata Group inches towards acquiring online grocery unicorn BigBasket at a valuation of $2 Bn to quench its super app thirst, the company has become involved in a new trademark infringement case. BigBasket has sent bootstrapped grocery delivery startup Daily Basket a notice over the use of the word ‘Basket’ in its brand name and logo.
BigBasket has claimed that Daily Basket infringes on its trademark and brand. Founded by Ramesh Vel and Ajit Kumar in June 2020, Daily Basket said that it received ‘cease and desist’ notice from BigBasket lawyers on February 17, 2021.Read The Legal Perspective On BigBasket Vs Daily Basket
Within days of receiving the notice, Daily Basket has launched a new website called bbisabully.com, where the headline of the page reads as ‘BigBasket is bullying dailybasket.com with cease and desist letter.’ The website, further, goes on to stating that Daily Basket is a tiny company, which is nothing like BigBasket.
The notice accessed by Inc42 says, “…the mere mention or reference of a name containing “basket” in word or logo form for any e-commerce business and related products conjure in the minds of relevant class of consumers and members of trade as that of being associated with our client (BigBasket).”
BigBasket alleges that consumers might perceive the service to be offered by BigBasket or that it is associated with the company, given the brand’s high recall among clients and customers.
Further, the notice adds that Daily Basket is carrying out an ecommerce business that is offering similar products and services through a similar domain name. “While using a ‘deceptively and/or confusingly similar’ name and mark.”
In Response, Daily Basket said, “Though we have a word ‘basket’ in our brand and we do deliver online groceries, it doesn’t mean we copied their trademarks or unethically copied their website & apps. We never misuse BigBasket’s brand in any way as they claimed in the cease and desist letter. That’s a blatant lie. This is our attempt to debunk their claims.”
Daily Basket cofounder Vel told ET that products being similar is to be expected given that both companies are in the grocery business. “We don’t have any similarities in design or app development, so they’re just confusing everyone with the word ‘basket’ being in our name,” he added.
Further, Vel said that Daily Basket does not have the resources to challenge BigBasket legally and hopes the issue will be resolved in a smooth manner. The company has a warehouse (3000 sq. ft.) in Coimbatore. It is planning to open its first offline store, which is expected to double its delivery capacity, later this month.
Incidentally, BigBasket was itself sued by tea maker Girnar over a trademark infringement case in 2018 involving the word ‘Royal’ which had been used by the online grocer for its private label brands.