Wild Geese launches campaign against BacardiBy Becky Paskin
The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey has launched an online campaign against Bacardi in response to the alleged trademark infringement of the latter’s Untameable marketing campaign.
Brand owner Avalon Group claims Bacardi’s new global marketing campaign, which was launched in November last year, is a “cut and paste” of the Untamed trademark owned by The Wild Geese, which has been registered in over 100 markets worldwide since 2011.
The British Virgin Islands-based group is combating Bacardi’s registration of the Untameable trademark in several markets, and has successfully halted its registration with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), which according to Avalon, had neglected to consider The Wild Geese trademark.
Andre Levy, chairman of Avalon distributor Protégé International, told The Spirits Business: “Bacardi are using our trademark to sell their products. It’s not just the trademark, but the look and feel of what we’ve done with Wild Geese is almost a cut and paste job.”
Now Avalon has launched the BacardiControversial.com website, Facebook page and Twitter hashtag in a bid to highlight what it claims are “bullying tactics” used by large corporations to “steal” smaller companies’ ideas.
“We want to make a difference and highlight what is happening all the time and come up with a creative solution that will actually stop this, and that’s what we’re trying to do with the Bacardi Controversial campaign,” Levy said.
“The copying of somebody’s design is literally stealing the thousands of hours you’ve put into something. It’s devaluing the sacrifices you’ve made, the intellectual investment and emotional investment.”
Levy claims that since the company’s inception, Avalon has had to fight 37 lawsuits from major companies, the majority of which he said were from Pernod Ricard over the “confusion” between Wild Turkey Bourbon and The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey.
“We won every action except for a partial loss in the US where we changed Wild Geese to Wild Geese Soldiers and Heroes,” Levy added.
Bacardi were unavailable for comment.