BUT JUST BECAUSE WE’VE BEEN SUCCESSFUL, WE CANNOT JUST SIT BACK AND RELAX.

BJÖRN BORG WINS AGAIN

Victoria Swedjemark, General Counsel, Björn Borg Björn Borg
Victoria Swedjemark, General Counsel, Björn Borg

With five straight Wimbledon titles, Björn Borg is Sweden’s most famous athlete. While it may not have won any Grand Slams, the Björn Borg brand has been gaining market share around the world.

 

With a focus on underwear, the brand is attractive to a youthful, sporty audience. But like so many other successful brands, it’s also popular with scam artists and counterfeiters.

THE FIRST CUSTOMER

Björn Borg were early adopters when the first e-commerce platforms emerged in the late 1990’s – so they were no strangers to brand infringements when they partnered with Yellow Brand Protection. Client Manager Charlotte Victorin remembers, Björn Borg was our first client. When they approached us, they were experiencing serious problems at a number of online marketplaces in China, the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark. We did what we always do after accepting the assignment – we researched the brand thoroughly, learning about each product right down to the tiniest detail.

SUCCESS IN HOLLAND

Though the challenges were tough, the partnership between Björn Borg and Yellow Brand Protection has been successful. Victoria Swedjemark, General Counsel and Sustainability Director at Björn Borg, says, We were facing problems at online marketplaces around the world. Due to significant sales of counterfeit products, the ones in the Netherlands were especially damaging. But thanks to Yellow Brand Protection’s daily efforts, including enforcement, this problem has been largely alleviated.

WHO’S THE MYSTERY SHOPPER?

On social media platforms – like Facebook and Instagram – sales of counterfeit products often take place in closed groups/profiles. The trick is gaining access to those groups. Lella Brauner, Head of Anti-Counterfeit at Yellow Brand Protection, explains, We pretend to be a mystery shopper in order to get at the listings and have them taken down.

These efforts have not only addressed counterfeit sales of Björn Borg products on social media platforms but have also been highly effective on image sharing sites like Dayviews and Photobucket.

TEST PURCHASES

Test purchases are an important part of an effective online brand protection strategy. It’s sometimes the only way to prove counterfeit items are being sold.

We purchase counterfeit underwear as mystery shoppers, and once we’ve received the items, we complete the documentation. This is of great importance to the client when taking legal action against the seller.

SWEATING THE DETAILS

With each new Björn Borg collection, the team at Yellow Brand Protection has to go back to school. Yes, says Lella Brauner, there’s a lot of learning involved. So, we study their product catalogues and image banks very carefully. Victoria Swedjemark is satisfied with the work done so far, but recognizes that it’s an ongoing battle. Just because we’ve been successful, it doesn’t mean the counterfeiters have given up and gone away. They’re always looking for new ways to profit from our brand. So we must always look for new ways to stop them.