Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Gucci Snubs U.S. Anti-counterfeiting Group over Alibaba Membership | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55350402

A man watches in front of window display outside a Gucci store in Hong Kong. Reuters

Gucci America has quit the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition, in the second such defection in two months, to denounce a move that allowed Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba to become a member in April.

Michael Kors walked out of the Washington, D.C.-based IACC last month, calling Alibaba “our most dangerous and damaging adversary.”

Gucci, along with other Kering Group brands like Balenciaga, is suing Alibaba in New York federal court.

They accuse Alibaba of knowingly encouraging and profiting from the sale of counterfeit goods on its e-commerce
platforms. Alibaba, China’s dominant player in online commerce, has dismissed the suit as “wasteful litigation.”

By Saturday, Gucci’s name had been struck from the website of IACC, which has over 250 members, including Apple, Cisco Systems and Chanel.

“They were not happy about Alibaba joining,” said IACC vice-president Candice Li-Uzoigwe, adding Gucci informed the group of its decision to leave on Wednesday.

“The IACC stands by its decision and is committed to lean into the future and lead a coalition of the willing,” IACC president Robert Barchiesi said by email Saturday.

“Whether it’s payment processors or online marketplaces, the choice is clear, they must be an integral part of the solution,” he added.

Alibaba said IACC membership would allow it to work more closely and effectively with brands to proactively enforce intellectual property rights.

The e-commerce giant ‘s revenue surged 39 percent year-on-year in the first three months of 2016, it said Thursday, its fastest growth in the last four quarters.

Revenue hit 24.18 billion yuan ($3.75 billion) for the three months to March, it said in its quarterly results announcement, in a clear defiance to brands.