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Liverpool Football Club in Trademark Bid Failure

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Reigning European Cup champions and current runaway Premier League leaders Liverpool FC have failed in their bid to register the word ‘Liverpool’ as part of their wider marketing activities.

The iconic club, founded in 1892 and with a fan base of millions throughout the world, had made it clear that they only wanted to register ‘Liverpool’ in the context of football-related activity. The Anfield-based club stated that its application was driven by a desire to protect fans from traders selling unauthorised products bearing the club’s name. However, a recent decision by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has refused their application. Even though other clubs such as Chelsea FC have registered place name trademarks for similar football-related commercial usage, the ICO said that in comparison to their Premier League rivals, the ‘geographical significance’ of Liverpool as a city was far more significant and therefore unsuitable for similar trademark protection.

Intellectual Property Legal Action

Following the ICO’s decision, the club released a statement stating that it will continue to ‘aggressively pursue’ large-scale operations seeking to exploit its intellectual property and urged the relevant authorities to take action where criminal activity has taken place. The clubs CEO Peter Moore commented:

It should be stressed that our application was put forward in good faith and with the sole aim of protecting and furthering the best interests of the club and its supporters. Nevertheless, we accept the decision and the spirit in which it has been made…I would also like to take the opportunity to reiterate our thanks to all those who engaged with us throughout this process, most notably independent traders and local football clubs.”

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