Nando’s attempts to stuff Fernando’s continuing business with trade mark claim
There have been many attempts by businesses over recent years to get a foot up in business by associating themselves with other well-established businesses.
While many small businesses hold their hands up and go ahead with a name change, there are others who claim to be completely innocent in respect of trade mark infringement.
The most recent case is cooking up to be another David and Goliath battle, this time in respect of chicken.
Becoming a widely known, cool hotspot for the young and the old to get their peri-peri fix, Nando’s has become a firm fixture on many high streets.
While Nando’s was founded in South Africa, their menu is influenced by Portuguese cuisine.
This brand identity is the basis of their latest trade mark battle.
Nando’s have sent a cease and desist letter to Reading based ‘Fernando’s’ which is an independent chicken eatery, also inspired by Portuguese flavours and imagery.
Nando’s is claiming that not only is the name confusingly similar and infringes their registered trade mark, Fernando’s is using imagery which also infringes Nando’s Portuguese chicken and chilli marks.
Fernando’s director Asam Aziz has hit back at Nando’s claims, citing the TV show ‘Take Me Out’ as the inspiration for his business. On the show, couples are set to the fictitious isle of Fernando’s for their dates.
Having set up his business 7 months ago, Mr Aziz is questioning why Nando’s has only now contacted him and he believes their letter is a bully attempt to put him out of business.
At this stage, Nando’s have only sent a cease and desist letter and have not yet taken formal legal court action. However, if Mr Aziz choses to fight against this, there is a likelihood this could develop into a full litigation battle.
Trouble in the coop is on the horizon- watch this space!
By Ellis Sweetenham