Luxembourg/Geneva — Nestlé has suffered a setback in its long-running attempt to get trademark protection for the shape of its four-fingered KitKat as the EU’s highest court said more proof was needed that it’s distinctive across every EU country. In a boost to rival Mondelez International, on Wednesday, the EU court of justice backed a lower tribunal’s 2016 decision and the trademark’s validity will now have to be re-examined by the EU’s Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) under strict conditions. "This development will be a big blow to Nestlé since it will likely lose its EU trademark for the four-fingered chocolate bar," said Claire Lehr, head of trademarks at EIP Europe in London. "Although it may not have been such a surprise, since the UK courts have already found that the four-finger shape is not distinctive." Nestlé’s fight to protect the shape of the KitKat has gone on since 2002. It seemed settled in 2006 when the EUIPO registered a trademark, but Mondelez challenged it, ...

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