BGD Client Secures Trademark for Scented Ukuleles
As highlighted recently by The Wall Street Journal, trademark protection is no longer restricted to simply words and logos. Companies are now fighting to protect other distinctive characteristics they feel set their products and brands apart from their competitors, such as sounds, shapes and smells.
As more companies are seeking trademark protection for their distinctive scents and aromas, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office requires an applicant to show that a fragrance serves no important practical function other than to serve to identify and distinguish a brand.
One of a few companies to have met this requirement to date is firm client Eddy Finn Ukulele Co., a division of SHS International, Inc., headquartered in Indianapolis. BGD partner, Daniel L. Boots helped secure federal trademark protection for Eddy Finn’s piña colada scented musical instruments, particularly ukuleles, as discussed in the recent WSJ story “Eau de Fracking? Companies Try to Trademark Scents.”
In securing the federal trademark, Boots and SHS founder Guy Petty emphasized that the tropical scent of the ukulele is often synonymous with the smell of a beach. Thus, the scent the instruments exude distinguishes the Eddy Finn brand and its identity from other ukulele manufacturers.