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JetBlue sues Walmart for trademark infringement over Jetblack service

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06/24/2019 | 10:54am EDT
FILE PHOTO: The Walmart logo is displayed on a screen on the floor of the NYSE in New York

NEW YORK (Reuters) - JetBlue Airways Corp has sued Walmart Inc for trademark infringement, in an effort to stop the world's largest retailer from using the name Jetblack for its text-based personal shopping service.

In a complaint filed on Friday night, JetBlue said Jetblack was a "transparent attempt" by Walmart to capitalize on the carrier's goodwill, and would likely cause "significant consumer confusion" as the service expands across the United States.

JetBlue also said Walmart intended further infringements by using other "Jet+color" names such as Jetgold and Jetsilver, and moving closer to JetBlue's core business by offering travel services, including dining and entertainment recommendations.

The complaint said JetBlue owns 43 federal trademark registrations for JetBlue marks dating as far back as 1999, the year before the Long Island City, New York-based carrier began flying passengers. JetBlue is now the sixth-largest U.S. airline.

Walmart launched Jetblack in New York City in May 2018, as part of the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer's effort to compete with such e-commerce services as Amazon.com Inc's Amazon Prime, especially in urban areas.

"We respect the intellectual property rights of others," Walmart spokesman Randy Hargrove said. "We take this issue seriously, and once we are served with the complaint will respond appropriately with the court."

The lawsuit filed in Manhattan federal court seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. Jet.com, which Walmart bought in 2016, is also a defendant.

JetBlue and its lawyers did not immediately respond on Monday to requests for comment.

Jetblack calls itself a "personal shopping and concierge service that combines the convenience of e-commerce with the customised attention of a personal assistant," with "busy parents" among its target customers.

The business is a startup located within Store No. 8, which is Walmart's Silicon Valley-based incubation arm.

The case is JetBlue Airways Corp v Jet.com 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 and Phil Berlowitz)

By Jonathan Stempel

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AMAZON.COM -0.54% 2010.256 Delayed Quote.33.89%
JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORPORATION 4.46% 19.5669 Delayed Quote.16.63%
WALMART INC. -0.02% 114.97 Delayed Quote.23.44%
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Financials (USD)
Sales 2019 275 B
EBIT 2019 17 652 M
Net income 2019 13 626 M
Finance 2019 39 781 M
Yield 2019 -
P/E ratio 2019 74,7x
P/E ratio 2020 53,1x
EV / Sales2019 3,47x
EV / Sales2020 2,89x
Capitalization 995 B
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Technical analysis trends AMAZON.COM
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
Income Statement Evolution
Mean consensus BUY
Number of Analysts 49
Average target price 2 247,27  $
Last Close Price 2 020,99  $
Spread / Highest target 36,1%
Spread / Average Target 11,2%
Spread / Lowest Target 0,45%
EPS Revisions
Jeffrey P. Bezos Chairman, President & Chief Executive Officer
Brian T. Olsavsky Chief Financial Officer & Senior Vice President
Patricia Q. Stonesifer Independent Director
Tom A. Alberg Independent Director
Thomas O. Ryder Independent Director
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