Posted on Friday 15 December 2017 by Cruickshank Intellectual Property

The explosion of celebrity culture has seen numerous attempts by businesses to capitalise on celebrity names and images however in most cases it brings with it issues and trouble in a commercial setting. While using a celebrity name or likeness of a name can further enhance the commercial value of a product or service, using it without permission is a violation of that celebrity’s intellectual property (IP) rights.

So, it’s no surprise when a beer named after singer Beyoncé released last month soon found itself with a problem. No sooner was it introduced that it has now been removed from shelves. Released by Brooklyn brewery ‘Line-up Brewery’ the owner Katarina Martinez was recently handed a cease and desist letter by the hitmakers management team. ‘Bieryonce’ a German Pilsner was inspired by Martinez herself, who after missing the chance to see Beyoncé in concert decided to pay homage instead through her product. The artwork on the beer itself is also incredibly similar to the cover of her self-titled album released back in 2013. While Martinez is disappointed with the action, she insists ‘it was fun while it lasted.’ No doubt the recent media spotlight on the product will provide good advertisement for the brewery although it’s a shame the famous singer was not ‘Crazy in Love’ with their product