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Red Bull accuses Canadian rival of trademark infringement

By Elaine Watson , 12-Sep-2011
Last updated on 13-Sep-2011 at 17:47 GMT2011-09-13T17:47:59Z

Energy drinks giant Red Bull has accused Canadian firm Bullseye Beverages Ltd of infringing Red Bull trademarks and misleading consumers with its Bullseye Energy Drink.

According to papers filed by Red Bull Gmbh and subsidiary Red Bull Canada at a federal court in Vancouver, the defendants (Bullseye Beverages Ltd and its directors Richard, Joe and David Vanderploeg and Elvis Pinnock) had marketed the drink in such a way “as to cause or be likely to cause confusion in Canada between the defendants’ wares and the wares and business of Red Bull”.

Defendants ‘passed off their wares’ as Red Bull

Red Bull also claims that the defendants have “passed off their wares as and for those of Red Bull” and is seeking damages plus an injunction that would prevent Bullseye Beverages Ltd from using the BULLSEYE trade mark with the color red plus a depiction of a charging bull or other trademarks, names or designs “likely to be confusing with the Red Bull trade marks”.

According to Red Bull, Bullesye Beverages Ltd has claimed that its Bullseye Energy Drink has the same formula as and is identical to Red Bull other than the fact it is not carbonated.

Letters sent to Red Bull by the defendants on November 26, 2010 and January 14, 2011 falsely claimed that Bullseye had never adopted the Bull Design Trademark, said Red Bull, which has proposed the case be tried in Vancouver.

Karen MacDonald, a barrister at Smart & Biggar, the law firm representing Red Bull, said: “Unfortunately, as it is an ongoing case, we cannot provide you any information on the status of the current action.”

She added: “I can also confirm that we are not aware of any association between the entity named in the Action and the US entity Bullseye Energy LLC.”

FoodNavigator-USA has been unable to establish contact with Bullseye Beverages Ltd.