A British beer company has been making beer with the moniker Elvis Juice, and the estate of Elvis Presley feels that they are hijacking the King of Rock's brand. The estate of Elvis Presley launched a lawsuit against BrewDog, a beer company that produces the beer called Elvis Juice. BrewDog recently won the lawsuit and it will get to continue using the name.
Elvis Juice is a grapefruit-flavored India Pale Ale that BrewDog has made since 2015. It has become the third highest-selling craft beer in England. However, Authentic Brands Group, which polices the Elvis Presley brand, wrote the owners of BrewDog a letter telling them to cease and desist using the name.
The founders of BrewDog both changed their names to Elvis in response, hoping that it would serve to show that the Elvis Presley brand did not have the right to exclusively use the name. Last year, the United Kingdom's Intellectual Property Office ruled that drinkers of Elvis Juice might believe that it was a product that had been officially sanctioned by the King of Rock's estate.
However, BrewDog persisted with an appeal and they won. As a way to celebrate, the brewery has offered all of the patrons at its bars a free beer if they arrive wearing an Elvis costume.
This case is an example of how an estate that owns a brand and other kinds of intellectual property may need to be diligent to protect its brand for years and even decades into the future. Although the Elvis estate lost its case in this situation, it is a good example of how diligent a well-managed estate should be in protecting its intellectual property rights.
Source: CNBC, "Elvis Presley’s estate loses trademark battle over beer brand," Lucy Handley, accessed Feb. 09, 2018