Wednesday 23 August 2017

McGregor takes fight to 'IP squatter' with trademark challenge

UFC champion Conor McGregor
UFC champion Conor McGregor

Simon Rowe

UFC champion Conor McGregor has launched a fightback against a suspected trademark and cyber squatter who has laid claim to his money-spinning brand name.

McGregor's Irish trademark lawyers have lodged a legal challenge to a Manchester-based businesswoman's bid to register applications for three UK trademarks and one EU trademark incorporating his moniker.

Tabassum Gazala Khan has gone on a spending spree since July in an apparent bid to acquire valuable commercial IP linked to the UFC star.

Ms Khan spent €3,150 applying for an EU trademark for 'Conor McGregor The Notorious' just days after shelling out £500 (€590) on three UK trademark applications for 'The Notorious Conor McGregor', 'Conor The Notorious McGregor' and 'Conor McGregor The Notorious'.

She has also beaten the Irish star to the punch by registering three dotcom domain addresses and a limited company which all incorporate the sport star's name. Ms Khan has registered the following websites: conormcgregorthenotorious.com, conorthenotoriousmcgregor.com and thenotoriousconormcgregor.net

The EU trademark application covers 17 classes of IP, which would enable Ms Khan to cash in on McGregor's name on products including aftershave, computer games, mugs and beer.

But McGregor's trademark lawyers at FR Kelly lodged a challenge on Thursday to Ms Khan's application. McGregor has also filed an application to register an Irish trademark for 'MacLifeFast'.

The legal filing claims that McGregor has "built up a substantial reputation such that use of the Trade Mark applied for by the Applicant would take unfair advantage".

Top Irish trademark lawyer Brian Conroy, who has followed the case closely, said: "In very short summary, in non-legalese this application translates as 'this woman has no right to try and freeload off Conor McGregor's name, has no connection with it, and can't use it to confuse people into thinking anything they release has anything to do with McGregor, and it's also taking advantage of his name and reputation when they have no entitlement to'."

No decision has yet been made on the legal status of each applicant.

Sunday Indo Business

Also in Business