EasyJet Founder to Sue Netflix Over Trademark Infringement Dispute
Airline billionaire Sir Stelios Haji-loannou is taking legal action against Netflix over the title of its Chicago based comedy show ‘Easy’, claiming the use of its name breaches the airlines European trademarks.
The popular Netflix show will have its third and final series aired in 2019, however the airline mogul seeks to ban the streaming giant from showing or promoting the series under its current name across Europe.
The claim seeks an injunction to prevent Netflix from using the name ‘Easy’ within the EU and is looking for up to £10,000 (approx. $13,000) in damages.
Founded in 1995, The EasyGroup has since opened numerous travel and hospitality groups such as Easyhotel and Easygym. The group currently obtains ownership for the trademark of the word ‘Easy’ in Europe and portray to have strict protection over its trademark; going as far as having a section on the EasyGroup website that is solely dedicated to “brand thieves”.
In a statement Sir Stelios said: “We own the European trademark in the word “easy” and another one thousand trademarks with easy as a prefix and we can’t allow people to use it now as a brand name, especially when they are doing it mostly with our colours and font”.
In response, A Netflix spokesperson said: “We’re looking into it but think viewers can tell the difference between a show they watch and a plane they fly.”
If easyJet founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou succeeds in the claim, Netflix could be forced to change the programme's name in Europe.
Easy money to be made? Possibly…
By Sena Tokel, a student at Southampton Solent University