Posted by Barry Silverstein on May 17, 2010 11:16 AM
Christian Louboutin is mad as hell and isn't going to take it anymore.
The French luxury shoe and handbag maker, famed for its iconic red-lacquered sole, is making a concerted effort to stop counterfeiters from undermining its brand, using the Internet as its main weapon. The company has launched a new website, Stop Fake Louboutin, listing identified websites that sell Louboutin fakes.
The company makes this strongly worded statement on the new site:
"We have adopted a 'zero tolerance' policy and have put in place a comprehensive program to deal not only with the sites offering fake Christian Louboutin products, but the sources thereof, the distribution systems, the auction sites and other avenues of trade in the fake products."
"Keep in mind that when something is too good to be true, that's usually what it is worth. Websites selling low low priced Louboutin looking shoes (so called 'cheap Louboutin') are probably not selling the real thing. We make no shoes in Asia. There is no factory in China that can sell legitimate shoes to anyone as we do not use any factories in China."
The website also contains an unusual video of counterfeit shoes being crushed by a truck, which you can watch after the jump.
Attorney Harley Lewin, who represents the company with regard to intellectual property, tells the Wall Street Journal, "I hope that little motion-picture destruction... gets picked up virally."
Christian Louboutin has good reason to be so aggressive. Its shoes are priced at $600 and up. The company is clearly being hurt by knock-offs; on its official website, it prominently warns against unauthorized websites, and links to its new "Stop Fake Louboutin" site.
Counterfeits continue to be a nagging problem for virtually every luxury brand marketer. In a recent case, Versace won $20 million in damages in a U.S. court against an organized counterfeiting operation.
Maybe Christian Louboutin's online strategy will embolden other luxury brands to aggressively fight back against knock-off artists.