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Tantocos nix use of Rustan's brand in Robinsons' takeover.

The Gokongwei family's Robinsons Retail Holdings Inc. may not be able to use the 'Rustan's' trademark and trade name when it takes over the Rustan Supercenters Inc. from the Dairy Farm Group, the Tantoco family said yesterday.

The Tantoco family is the founder and operator of the Rustan Group of Companies.

In a statement yesterday, the Tantoco family said there must be prior written consent from Rustan Commercial Corp. (RCC).

'The Rustan's trademark and trade name are owned solely and the use by any third party thereof requires the prior written consent of RCC,' they said.

Last month, RRHI announced its acquisition of Rustan Supercenters Inc. in a share swap transaction valued at P18 billion.

Under the transaction, RRHI approved the acquisition of Mulgrave Corp BV's 100 percent stake in Rustan Supercenters. Mulgrave is a subsidiary of Dairy Farm International Holdings, the Hong Kong-based retail company, which earlier acquired Rustan Supercenters from the Tantoco family.

Rustan Supercenters operates Marketplace by Rustan's, Rustan's Supermarket, Shopwise Hypermarket, Shopwise Express and Wellcome.

RRHI agreed to partner with Dairy Farm to build a leading food retail business.

However, the Tantoco family said Dairy Farm's contractual right to use the trademark name had already been terminated on April 3, 2018.

'(W)hat must be placed on record is that - while Dairy Farm had the contractual right to use the Rustan's trademark and trade name from its first acquisition in 2012 due to a sizeable shareholding in RSCI, that contract was only for a limited period of five years commencing from the year 2012 and was terminated upon our written notice to the Dairy Farm Group on April 3, 2018. We did not issue a termination notice earlier because there were active ongoing negotiations between us and the Dairy Farm Group for the renewal of the contract to use the Rustan trademark and trade name,' The Tantoco family said.

'So, contrary to media reports, the Rustan trademark and trade name was never a part of the business transaction between RRHI and Dairy Farm Group, legally or otherwise,' it added.

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Publication:Philippines Star (Manila, Philippines)
Date:Apr 12, 2018
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