LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA signed an accord with Google Inc. to tackle the advertising and sale of counterfeit goods online, ending a legal dispute between the two companies. The agreement “paves the way for greater cooperation towards a safer and more engaging digital environment,” LVMH vice-president Pierre Gode said in an e-mailed statement.
LVMH had accused Mountain View, California-based Google of violating its trademark rights by selling protected words as keywords that then link users to websites selling counterfeit items when they search under the French company’s brands. Google in 2010 allowed the practice, following a European Union court ruling, bringing the company’s policy in Europe in line with company rules in about 190 countries.
The agreement is the second truce the world’s largest luxury-goods company has announced in as many days. LVMH agreed to distribute its stake in Hermès International SCA to shareholders and institutional investors, following intervention by a French court, it said yesterday. The move ended a four-year battle after the maker of Krug champagne and Hublot watches started building the holding without Hermès’s knowledge.