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Viacom18 takes on counterfeit merchandise

With the help of court and police, the network raided two stores in Mumbai found to be selling fake products

BestMediaInfo Bureau | Mumbai | February 22, 2017


Viacom18 Media recently conducted an investigation that led to a raid in Mumbai’s Abdul Rehman Street where two stores -- Shubham Return Gifts and Eliperi Stationery -- were found to be selling counterfeit Dora The Explorer products. The investigation was part of an attempt to counter the growing problem of counterfeit merchandise.

The stores were raided by a team comprising Court Receivers of the Bombay High Court and representatives of Viacom18. The broadcast network in its statement stated, “The owners of the stores will be summoned to Court to identify the source and locations of the manufacturers of the seized goods.”

The other characters from Viacom18 that are quite popular in the consumer products segment include Peppa Pig, Motu Patlu, FC Barcelona, Shiva, Pakdam Pakdai and Ninja Hattori.

Viacom18 Consumer Products has crossed Rs 200 crore in retail sales in India. While there is no specific data, but considering various market visits and multiple data studies, for every rupee of legitimate sales, Viacom18 loses about Rs 4-5 worth merchandise, according to the sources.

It must be noted that some leading consumer products players are also broadcast networks, which include Turner International India and Disney India. They own intellectual properties (IPs) such as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Frozen, Marvel’s characters, Chhota Bheem, Mighty Raju, Tom and Jerry, Kris and Oggy and the Cockroaches.
Saugato Bhowmik Saugato Bhowmik

Saugato Bhowmik, Executive Vice-President and Business Head, Consumer Products and Integrated Network Solutions, Viacom 18 Media, said, “This is a constant problem for everyone in the licensing industry, and across for movies, music or content industry too. We have been taking steps as we were very clear that we will be sending a firm message to the market that we are not going to take this softly. We will be protecting our IPs. We will continue to do this in the future.”

An official statement by Viacom 18 said, “We see this as an essential step towards ensuring that our characters are not represented on inferior, unlicensed products -- which may pose health and safety risks. We are extremely grateful for the cooperation of the judiciary and the police who have executed the appropriate legal action to protect our intellectual property and to prevent inferior, and potentially dangerous products, from being sold to unsuspecting consumers.”

Bhowmik said that it will be a welcoming move if the industry players come together to fight for the cause.


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