Six-month-old early-stage grocery startup DailyBasket, which is currently operational in Coimbatore, has responded publicly to Alibaba-backed grocery unicorn BigBasket’s ‘cease and desist letter.’ According to the notice sent to DailyBasket last week, BigBasket had alleged that the young startup is “violating and diluting” the former’s brand name and trademark by adopting “a name and mark which is deceptively and/or confusingly similar to our client’s name (BigBasket) and mark for your e-commerce business and used it in the same style as our BigBasket/BigBasket.com brand and mark.” A copy of the notice was seen by Financial Express Online.
BigBasket levelled that such “unauthorized acts” are “causing irreparable injury that cannot be computed in monetary terms.” DailyBasket summarizing BigBasket’s asks, on a website bbisabully.com (BigBasket is a bully), said that the latter has sought: first, use of the domain name dailybasket.com to be stopped; second, its mobile apps to be discontinued; third, all the operations of the company to be stopped immediately; fourth; transfer the domain name dailybasket.com to BigBasket immediately free of cost; fifth, pay legal team Rs 2 lakh rupees to cover the legal notice; and sixth, not to use similar domain containing “basket” as a prominent feature ever again.
Comments from DailyBasket and BigBasket will be updated here as and when received.
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In the point-by-point rebuttal to BigBasket, DailyBasket’s Founder Ramesh Kumar V said that “Except the word ‘basket’, there are no similarities or trademark violations in the brand logo. Colors are different, font is different, graphics is different and the name itself is different. So they want to sue us because we have ‘basket’ in our name.” He added that the last time a grocery company had a basket in its name was NaturesBasket.com started in 2005, way before BigBasket. Planning to go for an IPO in the coming years, BigBasket was launched in 2011.
Importantly, Milkbasket is another micro-delivery company having the word ‘basket’ in its name. However, it operates in a niche market of milk delivery.
“’basket’ is a very common word in e-commerce/offline commerce. If we use BigBasket’s logic, then Godrej’s Nature’s Basket, which predates BigBasket by a full 6 years, could unleash the same claims on BigBasket. I really appreciate DailyBasket’s chutzpah. Hope BigBasket realizes the bully they are being and backs off,” Karthik Srinivasan, former National Lead at Ogilvy & Mather and communications strategy consultant tweeted.
DailyBasket is currently planning to set up a string of mini supermarkets in Coimbatore and make them act as delivery hubs for its online delivery business while it operates a single warehouse, the company said. “We put this in open so we want to fight them in public…We don’t have that mighty power & money bigbasket possess to engane in endless lawsuits and unlawful intimidations. But we will show the truth in public to everyone to see what bigbasket has become. And how a big billion dollar company sees a upcomer as a competition and trying to eliminate us with corporate bullying,” said Kumar.