BrewDog founders James Watt and Martin Dickie have changed their names to ‘Elvis’ by deed poll after the Elvis Presley estate launched a legal action against them over their ‘Elvis Juice’ IPA.
Elvis Watt and Elvis Dickie
Watt and Dickie, co-founders of the not remotely publicity-shy Scottish brewery BrewDog, took the drastic step after The King’s estate grapefruit & blood orange IPA, Elvis Juice.
Although Elvis Presley died in 1977, his name and likeness have been trademarked by Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE), which earns millions of dollars every year through a licensing programme that grants the right to manufacture and sell Elvis Presley merchandise worldwide.
In response to this the Elvis estate’s litigation, BrewDog insisted that the Elvis Juice IPA had no connection to the singer and suggested that there ought to be “a little less conversation and more time enjoying our beer”.
Elvis Watt said: “We’re caught in a trap and suggest the grey-suited hound dogs at the Presley estate recognise that the name Elvis is not exclusive. So, in an effort to patch it up, we’ve changed our names to highlight our burning love for the best grapefruit IPA out there.
“From this point forward, Elvis Juice is named after us, the brewers formerly known as James and Martin. We may even file a case against Mr Presley for using our names on all his records without our written permission.”
Extreme measures: the brewers formerly named as James Watt and Martin Dickie have both changed their names to Elvis by deed poll
“We would like to recommend that Presley’s Estate diverts its attention to another potential source of quick remuneration: a brewery that calls itself ‘The King’ of beer,” Elvis Dickie added.
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In a further bid to highlight what it describes as a “misdirected” litigation attempt, BrewDog is offering a free half pint of Elvis Juice IPA to any Elvis namesakes of legal drinking age this weekend. All Elvises are required to present a valid form of identification in any of BrewDog’s 28 UK bars.
Since hitting shelves earlier this year, Elvis Juice has become one of BrewDog’s best-selling beers.
BrewDog currently has 47 bars and bottle shops, exports to 55 countries, and was recently named as the UK’s 10th fastest-growing private business in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100.
With the help of 50,000 craft beer crusaders, its innovative business model, Equity For Punks, has also taken more money through crowdfunding than any other business on record.
The brewery recently announced that $2.5m has been raised to date in its latest crowdfunding round, Equity for Punks USA, which launched in August.