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Bombay HC dismisses Sebamed’s appeal in ad case

In the said order, the court had ruled Sebamed’s entire campaign based on the pH value of soap, comparing it to Dove, Pears and Lux, as ‘disparaging’ (Photo: HT)Premium
In the said order, the court had ruled Sebamed’s entire campaign based on the pH value of soap, comparing it to Dove, Pears and Lux, as ‘disparaging’ (Photo: HT)

Dismissing the appeal, the Division Bench of the Bombay High Court upheld the 17 June 2022 order by the High Court, which said that the advertisements launched by USV in January 2021, denigrated and disparaged Hindustan Unilever’s product

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NEW DELHI : The Bombay High Court on Wednesday dismissed an appeal filed by USV Pvt Ltd, which retails the Sebamed brand in India, against a 17 June order passed by the High Court that granted complete relief to Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) in an advertising case against Sebamed.

Dismissing the appeal, the Division Bench of the Bombay High Court upheld the 17 June 2022 order by the High Court, which said that the advertisements launched by USV in January 2021, denigrated and disparaged HUL’s products.

In the said order, the court had ruled Sebamed’s entire campaign based on the pH value of soap, comparing it to Dove, Pears and Lux, as “disparaging". It had also restrained Sebamed from airing the advertisement in any manner.

“The Court rulings reaffirm that the advertisement campaign by Sebamed denigrated HUL’s brands and misled consumers on the basis of pH, which is just one of the many parameters that go into manufacturing soap," said Dev Bajpai, Executive Director, Legal and Corporate Affairs, HUL.

Bajpai said Sebamed’s campaign was irresponsible and that such misleading communication was issued during the pandemic, when the Government and health authorities had advocated handwashing with any soap.

Sebamed had launched an advertising campaign comparing the HUL’s soap brands Lux, Dove and Pears to detergent brand Rin, alleging that the beauty soaps did not maintain the optimal 5.5 pH level used for skin. In January 2021, HUL moved the Bombay high court against Sebamed.

Meanwhile, on 17 June—the Bombay High Court had granted complete relief to HUL in an advertising case against personal care brand Sebamed. The court had then restrained USV Pvt Ltd., from further infringing on the brands owned by HUL and also asked it to take down Sebamed advertisements that compared the Indian company’s soap brands Lux, Dove and Pears with detergent bar Rin

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