Gander Mountain regains rights to use trademarks in DM

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In a reversal for Cabela's, the US District Court for the District of Minnesota has issued an order granting Gander Mountain the right to use certain Gander Mountain trademarks in direct marketing.

In 2005, a federal judge ruled that Gander lost the right to use its name and logo for direct marketing purposes when it sold its direct business in 1996 to Cabela's Inc., a Sidney, NE, outdoor gear and apparel cataloger, for $35 million. At the time, Gander's previous owners were trying to avoid bankruptcy. It didn't succeed and the retail business was eventually acquired by Holiday Companies.

In 2003, a revitalized Gander started selling shotgun barrels on its Web site. When Cabela's said this violated the 1996 agreement and Gander disagreed, both companies filed lawsuits. The basis of Gander's lawsuit was that Cabela's hasn't used the Gander name for any commercial purposes.

Gander was spun off as a publicly held company in April 2004.

"We are now going to accelerate our pace toward becoming the leading multi-channel outdoor retailer in the nation," said Mark Baker, president/CEO of Gander Mountain, in a statement, after the recent ruling.

He added that the Sain Paul, MN-based company will be launching an e-commerce Web site soon.

In a separate statement, Cabela's said that it believes the recent ruling is contrary to the agreement that was entered into by Cabela's and Gander Mountain in 1996. Cabela's is currently reviewing the ruling and discussing alternatives, including the possibility of an appeal.

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