Billabong enlists NetNames' aid in counterfeit battle

Billabong storefrontBillabong has teamed up with online brand protection specialist NetNames as it looks to get rid of fake clothing from digital platforms.

Lesley Skipp, the sports clothing and equipment company's international intellectual property manager, said: "It is of paramount importance that we have a strategy to protect our customers from disappointing quality and potential dangers of online counterfeits."

NetNames offers a monitoring service for retailers that seeks out websites peddling fake goods and takes them down, and works with a number of major corporations including Unilever, Vans, Lowepro, Aviva and P&O Ferries.

Market research firm Technavio recently predicted that the overall global sports apparel market will grow at a constant exchange rate of 4.32 per cent over the period 2014-2019, but noted one of the major challenges to this growth is the availability of fakes in the marketplace.

"Counterfeits pose a significant threat to the established brands as it affects these companies' brand image and profits," it said.

Meanwhile, a report published last month by the EU's Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) estimated that in Europe alone counterfeiting costs sports equipment manufacturers some €500m every year.

Image courtesy of:
ChameleonsEye /

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