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Company News

Australia's Ampol sued by Chevron over alleged 'Caltex' branding breaches

FILE PHOTO: An entrance sign at the Chevron refinery, located near the Houston Ship Channel, is seen in Pasadena, Texas, U.S., May 5, 2019. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

(Reuters) - Australian fuel supplier Ampol Ltd ALD.AX on Tuesday said Chevron Corp CVX.N had launched court proceedings against it, alleging breaches of a trademark licence deal under which Ampol previously used the U.S. company's "Caltex" brand.

Chevron is alleging these breaches occurred due to Ampol’s usage of “non-compliant” signage at 177 of its about 800 controlled retail sites, and is seeking an order for removal of the signage and damages, Ampol said in a statement.

The alleged breaches were also seen at an unspecified number of third-party sites operating under a sub-licence from Ampol, it said.

Ampol began the process of transitioning from “Caltex” to its old “Ampol” branding in December, after it received a termination notice from Chevron.

It said it had time until Dec. 31, 2022 under the licensing deal to complete the transition of its entire retail network to the new company-owned brand.

Ampol is confident of its position and will defend against the proceedings, the company said, adding that transition plans were on track.

“We are taking this legal action to protect the Caltex brand and avoid confusion that is caused by its misuse,” a Chevron spokesman said.

Chevron declined to comment on how much it is seeking in damages.

Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru and Sonali Paul in Melbourne; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Stephen Coates

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