201711.01
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McGregor Faces Trade Mark Fight


Conor McGregor, the Irish mixed martial arts professional who was defeated by professional boxer Floyd Mayweather in one of the biggest fights in combat sports history, has taken a further blow; this time in regards to his whiskey venture.

During McGregor’s time promoting the Mayweather v McGregor fight he was seen plugging a bottle of whiskey in front of the world’s media that was teased to be coming soon. The whiskey was labelled ‘Notorious’ which is the MMA fighters nickname and was one of a number of products that Mr McGregor was hoping to launch under his ‘Notorious’ brand in order to capitalise on his fame. Mr McGregor is now one of the highest paid global sports star due to the clever cultivation of his brand.

It has been reported this week, however, that the fighter has faced a step back in the process of actually getting the whiskey launched. According to the Irish Times, the man behind the Carlow Brewing Company, Seamus O’Hara, has opposed McGregor’s EU application to trade mark the word ‘Notorious’ as applied to alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

The reasons behind the opposition stem from the fact that Mr O’Hara is already an owner of an EU trade mark for ‘notorious’ which covers beers and spirits. Mr O’Hara claims that there is likely to be confusion amongst the public if McGregor’s application was to proceed to registration, though a likelihood of confusion is not required where the relevant application is identical to an earlier mark as in this case.

The spirit venture was no doubt set to earn McGregor a lot of money, however this recent set back is likely to put his plans on hold or even prevent them going forward altogether, as it would likely be a lot less profitable if it could not be marketed under the ‘Notorious’ brand. Mr McGregor has also encountered similar problems when seeking to register ‘Notorious’ for other goods, including sportswear in the UK and clothing generally in the Netherlands.