ORDER OF THE GENERAL COURT (Second Chamber)

24 May 2012 (1)

(Community trade mark – Invalidity proceedings – Withdrawal of the application for a declaration of invalidity – No need to adjudicate)

In Case T-315/11,

Fortress Participations BV, established in Rotterdam (Netherlands), represented initially by M. L. J. van de Braak, lawyer, B. Ladas, Solicitor, and S. Malynicz, Barrister, and subsequently by M. L. J. van de Braak, S. Malynicz, R. Black, Solicitor and V. Baxter, Solicitor,

applicant,

v

Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) (OHIM), represented by V. Melgar, acting as Agent,

defendant,

the other parties to the proceedings before the Board of Appeal of OHIM, interveners before the General Court, being

FIG LLC, established in New York, (United States), and Fortress Investment Group (UK) Ltd, established in London (United Kingdom), represented by
J. Gray and R. Mallinson, Solicitors,

ACTION brought against the decision of the Second Board of Appeal of OHIM of 8 March 2011 (Case R 355/2009-2), relating to invalidity proceedings between FIG LLC and Fortress Investment Group (UK), on the one hand, and Fortress Participations BV, on the other hand,

THE GENERAL COURT (Second Chamber),

composed of N. J. Forwood, President, F. Dehousse, J. Schwarcz (Rapporteur), Judges,

Registrar: E. Coulon,

makes the following

Order

1        By letter lodged at the Registry of the General Court on 26 April 2012, the applicant informed the General Court of an agreement between itself and the interveners and that, pursuant to that agreement, the interveners were withdrawing their application for a declaration of invalidity of the contested trade mark. The applicant stated that, in its view, there was no longer any need to adjudicate on the present action. It did not seek an order as to costs.

2        By letter lodged at the Registry of the General Court on 26 April 2012, the other parties to the proceedings before the Board of Appeal confirmed to the General Court that an agreement has been reached with the applicant, that pursuant to that agreement they withdrew their application for a declaration of invalidity and that a ruling delivered by the General Court was no longer required. They did not seek an order as to costs.

3        By letter lodged at the Registry of the General Court on 7 May 2012, the defendant signified its agreement to the request for an order that there was no need to adjudicate. The defendant requested that the applicant be ordered to bear the costs.

4        Pursuant to Article 113 of the Rules of Procedure of the General Court, it suffices in the present case to find that, in the light of the withdrawal of the application for a declaration of invalidity, the present action has become devoid of purpose. There is therefore no longer any need to adjudicate on it (order in Case T‑10/01 Lichtwer Pharma v OHIMBiofarma (Sedonium) [2003] ECR II‑2225, paragraphs 16 to 18).

5        Article 87(6) of the Rules of Procedure provides that, where a case does not proceed to judgment, the costs are in the discretion of the General Court.

6        In the present case, the General Court considers that the applicant must be ordered to bear its own costs and those of the defendant, and that the interveners must be ordered to bear their own costs.

On those grounds,

THE GENERAL COURT (Second Chamber)

hereby orders:

1.      There is no need to adjudicate on the action.

2.      The applicant shall bear its own costs and those incurred by the defendant. The interveners shall bear their own costs.

Luxembourg, 24 May 2012.

E. Coulon

        N. J. Forwood

Registrar

       President