Vibram against fakes online: 1,900 adverts and 416,000 fake models removed. Value: €17 million

Does online counterfeiting seem unstoppable? They don’t think so at Varesem, by Vibram. The brand known for the ultra high technology of its soles and technical footwear decided last November to launch a real war against the web counterfeiters of its brand. To do so, it partnered with MarkMonitor, the global leader in the protection of brand, turnover and reputation from online risks. Result: 60 web marketplaces scanned (especially for the protection of Vibram FiveFingers) and, in just over seven months, 1,900 adverts removed, for a total of 416,000 fake articles, amounting to a value of €17 million. MarkMonitor requested the closure of 353 websites “certified” as sellers of fake Vibram products, and 198 of these were blacked out. “The situation had become untenable – explained Paolo Manuzzi (pictured), General Manager of Vibram -. The phenomenon had become so significant that it was no longer manageable. In 2011 alone, for Vibram Five Fingers we calculated a loss of revenue of €1 million from online counterfeit products. A phenomenon that affects not only the Far East and China, but also the USA and South America. We have also stepped up checks at foreign customs and embarked on several cases of legal action to protect the brand, its reputation and consumer health.”

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