BrewDog wins Elvis Juice appeal

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Permitted: BrewDog is now allowed to use Elvis Juice in its branding
Permitted: BrewDog is now allowed to use Elvis Juice in its branding

Related tags Elvis presley

Scottish brewer and operator BrewDog has won the right to register ‘BrewDog Elvis Juice’ following a ruling by the Board of Appeal at the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO).

The trademark applications were originally rejected by the UKIPO in July 2017 on the grounds they were likely to cause confusion between the BrewDog and the Elvis marks.

The latter are owned by the late King of Rock ’n’ Roll’s estate, but BrewDog proceeded to appeal this decision.

Confusion unlikely

At the time, BrewDog was ordered to pay Elvis Presley Enterprises, the manager of the late singer’s estate, £1,500 and was told to rebrand the beer.

However, in reaching its recent decision, the board of appeal said there was unlikely to be any confusion caused by the two marks as one conjured up names, dogs, brewing and liquids, while the other was simply a name.

With the appeal upheld, BrewDog is free to continue to call one of its products ‘Elvis Juice’ and is no longer required to pay legal costs to the holders of Elvis Presley’s estate.

Important victory

Intellectual property firm Withers & Rogers trademark attorney and partner Tania Clark said: “This is an important victory for a highly successful brand that had sufficient confidence in the strength of its brand presence in its chosen marketplace to fight a legal challenge from the King of Rock ’n’ Roll’s estate.

“BrewDog has managed to show, through strong product sales, that its BrewDog Elvis Juice is a distinctive product in its own right.

“Brand owners should take care to ensure when naming products that they aren’t likely to infringe other pre-existing marks.

“Failing to do so, could mean risking a potentially costly and lengthy litigation. However in this case, the publicity surrounding the dispute may well have played out in BrewDog’s favour.”

The Morning Advertiser ​contacted BrewDog for a comment but it declined to respond.

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