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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
An interesting development in the Spanish/European courts yesterday.
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As reported by Bloomberg Businessweek December 1st.
link to original web site

Dec. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Red Bull GmbH, the Austrian energy- drink maker, lost a court bid to stop a maker of Scalextric racing games from putting its brand name on toy cars.

A court in Alicante, Spain, that frequently rules on European Union trademark cases dismissed the complaint against Tecnitoys Juguetes SA, Tomas Fornesa, a lawyer for the Barcelona-based company, said by phone. Red Bull initially sought 9 percent of game sales, he said.

Red Bull's sponsorships in car racing have included backing Volkswagen AG's entry in the Dakar Rally. Tecnitoys replicates the advertising logos on the racing cars. The toymaker doesn't make a version of the Formula One cars from Red Bull's two Formula One teams, Fornesa said.

"Nobody buys our games for the Red Bull branding," Fornesa said. "That would be like someone buying a Real Madrid soccer shirt because of the sponsor's name."

Tecnitoys and other Scalextric makers typically pay licensing fees of 4 percent to 10 percent of sales to carmakers including McLaren Group Ltd. and Daimler AG's Mercedes Benz to replicate their racing cars, Fornesa said.

Red Bull's deadline to appeal has expired, Fornesa said. Tina Deutner, a spokeswoman for Fuschl am See, Austria-based Red Bull, didn't return two e-mails seeking comment.

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The car in question;


There are several examples of Red Bull taking action against toy/slot manufacturers in the past and most (if not all) have previously been successful (Indycars and Decal manufacturers).

This may have interesting consequences for slotcar manufacturers with reductions in licensing costs - perhaps?

Link to a longer Spanish news report on the case
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Wow! That's a big win for Technitoys. Though the comment that nobody buys the cars for the livery sponsorship could be argued and rather heavily. Red Bull liveries are quite collectable. Perhaps not as much as some of the early liveries, but surely its almost as popular as Jaegermeister.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I guess there is a fairly big difference between slapping a logo on any slotcar to make it look attractive and making a slotcar of a real car/event.

I must admit it's a surprising decision, but i think a logical one. I have never really understood why any sponsor would not want the ripple effect of motorsport advertising being copied on toys. The only thing i could understand is if the quality of the toy was so bad it was detrimental to the brand and that is subjective.

I think (but am not sure) this was the case with the Red Bull Indycar because (i think) the slotcar was not based on a real car. On this basis selling Red Bull decal sets would also be questionable.
 

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I think it's stupid to stop someone reproducing replicas of the real thing, Its just greed. These big corporations deserve the slap in the face that this court has given them.

Surely thats the whole point of advertising, getting your image out there. Dont these companies "pay" for product placement on TV programmes? Whats the difference, it's still advertising isnt it?

Its not like Technitoys are selling soft drinks!
 

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Ian
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Very interesting, I wonder if this sets a precedent for other manufacturers IE all those Ferraris that haven’t been made this year?
 

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Yes it was interesting. For sure there's still lots of scope for the legal profession to makes loads of money arguing over the precise meaning of that sort of thing.

That judgement doesn't seem to say anything about Red Bull's rights if somebody is making a Red Bull F1, just about the Red Bull name on another make of car. So it doesn't look that relivant to models of Ferrari cars.

You also have to wonder if Red Bull shot themselves in the foot by demanding 9% - if they'd asked for a more modest fee would Technitoys have decided to pay up and save on legal fees.

QUOTE (SplitRim @ 1 Dec 2011, 11:58) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I think it's stupid to stop someone reproducing replicas of the real thing, Its just greed. These big corporations deserve the slap in the face that this court has given them.

Surely thats the whole point of advertising, getting your image out there. Dont these companies "pay" for product placement on TV programmes? Whats the difference, it's still advertising isnt it?
Quite possibly VW, Castorl, BT etc. (who's logos also appear on the car) were happy to accept the free advertising and didn't think it was worth trying to get some cash for the use of their trade mark/ logo. Just because a company doesn't always think its worth enforcing its legal rights, doesn't necessarily mean it could enforce them if it wanted to.
Or there again, quite possibly it was too unimportant for them to worry about.
 

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Ey Up,

I think "splitrim" has a good point, surely Red-Bull should be paying Technitoys, ( and the rest ), for advertising their product !!.

vbr Chris.
 

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It would appear that there is a very distinct split in these cases, and presumably the judgment reflects the fact that this is actually a VW vehicle with Red Bull advertising, as opposed to the F1 cars which are built by Red Bull Racing. (Or whatever the F1 team are actually called).

One for the lawyers to make a few bob on, no doubt.
 

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QUOTE (CJA @ 1 Dec 2011, 13:36) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Ey Up,

I think "splitrim" has a good point, surely Red-Bull should be paying Technitoys, ( and the rest ), for advertising their product !!.

vbr Chris.
It doesn't work like that in law.

Red Bull would only owe Technitoys any money for the advertising if a contract had been agreed up front.
 

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It's a shame that Red Bull don't appreciate the residual value of these things - hands up who has a JPS Lotus in their collection - some what, 30+ years after JPS stopped advertising in F1? (Please no flames [pun alert] about cigarette restrictions etc).

But you can't put those figures into a spreadsheet, so they aren't allowed in current business thinking...
 

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QUOTE (JEXY1 @ 1 Dec 2011, 11:20) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I think (but am not sure) this was the case with the Red Bull Indycar because (i think) the slotcar was not based on a real car. On this basis selling Red Bull decal sets would also be questionable.

The RedBull Scaley Indy car was actually based on a real livery.

As stated by other members, that's weird, they pay to get advertising and when they can get more return for free, touching people who might even not be in the known, they ask for cash. The fee they claimed is simply outrageous.

Regarding works cars, I am wondering why it is not stated in the sponsoring contract that the constructor get all the rights of reproduction. Same for the drivers.
 

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Peter Rondel
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fast lucky: if you sell more products/cars by using a popular brand........its not that strange they ask you for some cash. you are the one jumping on someone elses train, not the otherway around. my biggest problem is that I'm not drinking any jaegermeister because I own an orange car..........
 

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QUOTE (JEXY1 @ 1 Dec 2011, 21:20) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I guess there is a fairly big difference between slapping a logo on any slotcar to make it look attractive and making a slotcar of a real car/event.

I must admit it's a surprising decision, but i think a logical one. I have never really understood why any sponsor would not want the ripple effect of motorsport advertising being copied on toys. The only thing i could understand is if the quality of the toy was so bad it was detrimental to the brand and that is subjective.

I think (but am not sure) this was the case with the Red Bull Indycar because (i think) the slotcar was not based on a real car. On this basis selling Red Bull decal sets would also be questionable.
Your spot on there Jexy.

I guess I can now show pics of my track with RB stickers on it
 
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