The Court of Appeal in the Netherlands recognized Russia as the sole owner of the rights to the brand "Stolichnaya", SPI Yuri Shefler should stop selling "Soviet" vodka.
The Dutch Court of Appeal upheld the lower court's decision, affirming the state-owned enterprise "Soyuzplodoimport" the right to brand the vodka "Stolichnaya". The decision entered into force only in the Netherlands. Now SPI Group Yury Shefler, who previously owned the rights to Soviet brands of vodka abroad, should stop selling "Stolichnaya" in this country.
In 2015, Russia seized from Shefler the right to the brands Stolichnaya and Moskovskaya in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. In the SPI Group, headquartered in Luxembourg, then they said that they consider the court's decision to be incorrect and consider possible answers.
In 2001, the Supreme Arbitration Court of Russia recognized the right to own brands of "Soviet" vodka owned by Russia, and in the following year the government decree established the federal state enterprise "Soyuzplodoimport", which began litigation with SPI.
In particular, in the territory of Benelux, the state enterprise managed to challenge the privatization of vodka brands, as a result of which 43 state vodka brands were purchased from Dutch Spirits International B.V., a member of SPI Group Shefler. Based on this decision of the court, "Soyuzplodoimport" won the right to trademarks of "Soviet" vodka in the Benelux.
For SPI, the right to turn "Soviet" vodka on the largest western market - in the US - remained. In 2016, litigation between Soyuzplodoimport and SPI for the right to dispose of the Stolichnaya brand in the US territory was resumed.