Diageo wins trademark battleBy Lauren Eads
A Texas court has ruled in favour of Diageo and against a Canadian whiskey rival in a trademark lawsuit over its Crown Royal brand.
In February 2013, UK drinks group Diageo began legal action against Texas-based Mexcor, maker of Texas Crown Club, for commercial slander, accusing the brand of creating “unlawful and disparaging whisky advertisements” by referring to a product which looks like Crown Royal as “that poison”.
It also accused Mexcor of trademark infringement, claiming the Crown Club whisky range, which also includes South Carolina Crown Club and Florida Crown Club, copied its own registered trademark and purple bag packaging.
Diageo released a statement today confirming that a Texas court had ordered Mexcor’s Crown Club to change its name and packaging, and also pay damages.
Nicole D’Amato, director and senior counsel for intellectual property at Diageo North America, said: “We are pleased that the jury agreed with us that Mexcor has been confusing our consumers and diluting the strength of our Crown Royal brand, and that they will now have to change their name and packaging. We are also gratified that the jury has backed up their verdict by awarding damages to Diageo. We take the protection of our brands and intellectual property extremely seriously and will work diligently to protect them.”
Mexcor has been ordered to pay damages to Diageo and change the name and packaging of its Crown Club whisky range.