Monday, March 02, 2020

There's trouble brewing

Hats off to The Comedian Formerly Known As Joe Lycett for changing his name by deed poll to Hugo Boss just to get up the nose of the fashion company, in retaliation for their bullying "brand enforcement" behaviour. One of their victims was Swansea-based Boss Brewing, who had to bear the £10,000 cost of the legal wrangling and then scrap or relabel existing stock.

Only last week I discovered that another local brewer has endured a very similar experience. Newport's Tiny Rebel went to trademark the genius Wham-referencing name of their best beer, Clwb Tropicana, only to be threatened by the might of Pepsi (who own the Tropicana juice brand) and forced to change it to Clwb Tropica.

Firms like Pepsi and Hugo Boss who are guilty of aggressive cease-and-desist orders deserve all the negative PR they get. Of course, this includes some brewers - most notably, a self-proclaimed punky upstart that claims to be a "renegade craft brewer" on a mission to "burn the established system"...

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