Diageo and Sazerac settle Bulleit suit

27th April, 2017 by Annie Hayes

Sazerac has agreed to alter the packaging of its Dr. McGillicuddy’s Irish whiskey brand in an out-of-court settlement with Diageo, which accused the firm of infringing its Bulleit Bourbon trademark.

Diageo’s Bulleit Bourbon

In December 2016 Diageo’s North America division launched legal action against Sazerac, claiming the firm had committed wilful acts of trademark infringement, unfair competition, trade dress infringement and dilution.

The trademark infringement dispute has now been dropped after both parties agreed to a settlement, the financial details of which were not disclosed.

The lawsuit stated that Dr. McGillicuddy’s product line was redesigned “in order to knock-off the appearance and unfairly trade on the reputation of Diageo’s extremely popular Bulleit brand Bourbon and rye whiskey”.

A spokesperson from Diageo said: “Diageo is committed to protecting the intellectual property rights of its well-known brands.

“We are pleased to have resolved our dispute with Sazerac, whereby they will modify the packaging of their McGillicuddy’s flavored and Irish whiskey products going forward.”

Sazerac declined to comment when approached by The Spirits Business.

Sazerac’s Irish whiskey brand Dr. McGillicuddy’s

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