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Coach Sues Jo-Ann Fabrics

A trademark infringement suit alleges that the companies sold merchandise bearing a logo confusingly similar to its Signature C logo.

Coach Inc. hit Jo-Ann Fabrics, its subsidiary brand Craft Stores and The Feldman Co. Inc. with a trademark infringement suit Monday, alleging that the companies sold merchandise bearing a logo confusingly similar to its Signature C logo.

Filed in the Northern District of Illinois, the lawsuit claims that the pattern of elongated Os found on the Blizzard Fleece fabric sold by Hudson, Ohio-based Jo-Ann in stores and on its Web site has likely caused “consumer confusion” as it resembles Coach’s C trademark.

The luxury handbag and accessories maker said it became aware of the alleged infringement in February, and it promptly contacted Jo-Ann and Feldman, a New York-based textile company responsible for designing the fabric.

While neither Jo-Ann nor Feldman is based in Illinois, Coach, headquartered in New York, said it found infringing goods in Jo-Ann’s Chicago area stores, but did not further explain why the case was filed in Illinois.

In addition to trademark infringement, the complaint charges the defendants with trade dress and copyright infringement, trademark counterfeiting, false designation of origin, false advertising and trademark dilution.

Coach is seeking an injunction, statutory damages of $2 million per counterfeit mark, per type of counterfeit good, punitive damages, attorneys’ fees and other costs.

Jo-Ann Fabric declined to comment. Calls to Feldman were not returned by press time.