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JetBlue sues Walmart for trademark infringement over Jetblack service

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By Reuters
JetBlue sues Walmart for trademark infringement over Jetblack service
FILE PHOTO: The Walmart logo is displayed on a screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., May 1, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid   -   Copyright  Brendan McDermid(Reuters)

NEWYORK (Reuters) – JetBlue Airways Corp has sued Walmart Inc for trademark infringement, after the world’s largest retailer began using the name Jetblack for its text-based personal shopping service.

In a complaint filed on Friday night in Manhattan federal court, JetBlue called Jetblack a “transparent attempt” by Walmart to capitalize on the goodwill associated with the carrier’s trademarks.

JetBlue also said Jetblack was likely to cause “significant consumer confusion” as Walmart expands the service, and warned that Walmart intends further infringements by using additional “Jet+color” names such as Jetgold and Jetsilver.

Walmart did not immediately respond on Monday to requests for comment. The lawsuit also names Walmart’s unit as a defendant.

Introduced in May 2018, Jetblack calls itself a “personal shopping and concierge service that combines the convenience of e-commerce with the customised attention of a personal assistant.”

Walmart launched Jetblack in part to help the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer expand beyond its brick-and-mortar base and compete with such services as Inc’s Amazon Prime, especially among consumers in urban areas.

JetBlue is based in Long Island City, New York.

The case is JetBlue Airways Corp v Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 19-05879.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Susan Thomas)