Comedian changes name to Hugo Boss to support brewery
British comedian Joe Lycett has changed his name to ‘Hugo Boss’ after the German fashion house of the same name sent a cease and desist letter to a Welsh brewery.
So @HUGOBOSS (who turnover approx $2.7 billion a year) have sent cease & desist letters to a number of small businesses & charities who use the word ‘BOSS’ or similar, including a small brewery in Swansea costing them thousands in legal fees and rebranding. (1/2)
— Hugo Boss (@joelycett) March 1, 2020
Lycett, a stand-up comic who has appeared on shows including Live at the Apollo and QI has changed his name by deed poll, posting the evidence on Twitter.
In a series of tweets, Lycett, or Boss, explained the reasoning behind his decision.
He write: “So @HUGOBOSS (who turnover approx US$2.7 billion a year) have sent cease & desist letters to a number of small businesses & charities who use the word ‘BOSS’ or similar, including a small brewery in Swansea costing them thousands in legal fees and rebranding.
“It’s clear that @HUGOBOSS HATES people using their name. Unfortunately for them this week I legally changed my name by deed poll and I am now officially known as Hugo Boss. All future statements from me are not from Joe Lycett but from Hugo Boss. Enjoy.”
Lycett also noted that the stunt was part of work he is doing on his new Channel 4 series called Got Your Back, which sees the comedian challenge businesses on behalf of wronged customers.
It follows news, reported last year, that Boss Brewing, based in Swansea, had to pay out almost £10,000, change the name of two of its beers and stop selling branded clothing after receiving a cease and desist letter from designer fashion label Hugo Boss.
Commenting on Lycett’s show of support, Boss Brewing tweeted: “So it’s official!! @joelycett (we mean Hugo) has only gone and done it! Just the most brilliant show of support from Joe. Can’t wait for you all to see the episode we filmed for his Channel 4 ‘Got Your Back’ show on the whole Hugo Boss saga. #LikeABoss”
This is not the first time that the beer industry has been caught up in a name change via deed poll.
Back in 2016, BrewDog founders James Watt and Martin Dickie changed their names to ‘Elvis’ by deed poll after the Elvis Presley estate launched a legal action against them over their ‘Elvis Juice’ IPA. Two years later, the stunt paid dividends. A previous ruling, which initially went against them, was overturned during an appeal hearing.