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Retailer Sued By Top Appliance Brand, Over House Brand Copy

Stanley Black & Decker has sued US retailer Sears who last month was fending off bancruptcy claiming they have launched a house brand product that they claim is in direct competition to a tool brand Sears sold to Stanley for $900 million in 2017.

Recently Sears launched the Craftsman Ultimate Collection of tools, shortly afterwards Stanley tools sued the retailer. Sears claims the “real home” of the 92-year-old Craftsman brand is with Sears.

“By touting itself as ‘the real home of the broadest assortment of Craftsman’ Sears is implying that only its Craftsman merchandise is ‘genuine’ and that all other Craftsman products are ‘illegitimate,’ ” Stanley said.

Stanley is seeking a temporary restraining order to stop Sears from selling the new products.

The big US retailer Sears filed for bankruptcy in October 2018. The Company that now owns Sears ESL won court approval to buy back the company for $5.2 billion.

It appears that Sears is allowed to sell Craftsman tools under a limited licensing deal, but Stanley claims Sears went rogue with its Craftsman line announced in a Feb. 21 press release.

“Anyone know anything about the Craftsman Ultimate Collection?” asked a Facebook reader while someone else responded that it was “the real Craftsman not the garbage stanley black and decker stuff.”

Separately, in bankruptcy court, Stanley is objecting to ESL owning the licensing rights Sears inked with Stanley in 2017, bankruptcy court filings show.

“The Craftsman mark would suffer both brand degradation and value diminution if it were assigned to ESL,” a filings states.

A Sears spokesman declined to comment.

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