What’s In A Name? The Struggles of Beer Branding

What’s In A Name? The Struggles of Beer Branding

By Rita Kohn of Nuvo

Trademarks and beer have been historically intertwined since 1876 when Burton upon Trent-based Bass Brewery [in business since 1777] registered the now iconic Bass Red Triangle for Bass Pale Ale as the first worldwide trademark under the United Kingdom’s Trade Mark Registration Act of 1875. The Bass Red Diamond for their strong ale became the second registered trademark.

Attorney Jeff Kosc, a partner at Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Arnoff, made this point during our conversation at TwoDEEP’s tasting room on Oct. 15 to underscore why branding is essential in the brewing industry. A brewery establishes its identity with its name and the connecting artwork, said Kosc, using the TwoDEEP coaster to illustrate two separate registrations at play—one for the name, another for the name within what we now associate its symbol—in this case an outline of Indiana surrounded by a circle. No other brewery can use this name and this artwork anyplace else in the world under protection of a registered trademark. Since 1876 every brewery has staked out its territory, and each has remained vigilant in maintaining its mark(s). “It’s essential to exercise due diligence and do exhaustive worldwide research,” says Kosc. “You don’t want to put out a lot money for labels, letterheads, etc. only to learn someone else has that name.”… CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL STORY AT NUVO

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