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Conor McGregor loses appeal after three-year trademark battle

Back in your box, Conor! Cocky Irish fighter loses appeal after three-year trademark battle with 100-year-old clothing firm McGregor

  • The UFC star applied to register his surname for his own apparel line in 2017 
  • McGregor the firm won an interim court injunction banning sale of star’s clothes
  • MMA fighter McGregor, 32, challenged the ruling but this has been thrown out 

Conor McGregor has lost the latest round of an ongoing legal fight with a clothing company called McGregor over trademarking his brand in Europe.

The UFC star applied to register his surname for his own apparel line in 2017 but the move was opposed by the McGregor fashion label – founded almost 100 years ago.

McGregor the firm won an interim court injunction banning the sale of the Irishman’s hoodies, shorts and sweaters, emblazoned with his signature in huge letters.

The company’s legal team claimed shoppers could be confused into believing some of the products made for the star were part of their label.

MMA fighter McGregor, 32, challenged the ruling and his lawyers argued there would be no confusion between the brands.

But the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has thrown out his appeal.

Conor McGregor has lost the latest round of an ongoing legal fight with a clothing company called McGregor over trademarking his brand in Europe

The UFC star applied to register his surname for his own apparel line in 2017 but the move was opposed by the McGregor fashion label - founded by Scottish hat maker David Doniger almost 100 years ago (clothes pictured)

The UFC star applied to register his surname for his own apparel line in 2017 but the move was opposed by the McGregor fashion label – founded by Scottish hat maker David Doniger almost 100 years ago (clothes pictured) 

In the ruling issued earlier this month, the EUIPO’s Board of Appeal said: ‘According to the case-law, the risk that the public might believe that the goods or services in question come from the same undertaking or, as the case may be, from economically-linked undertakings, constitutes a likelihood of confusion

‘In view of the identity of the conflicting goods, the average degree of visual and aural similarity between the conflicting signs, the normal level of attention of the relevant public and the normal inherent distinctive character of the earlier mark, there is a likelihood of confusion.

‘The appeal is not well founded.’  

McGregor the brand was founded by David Doniger, a member of Clan Gregor and started producing clothing using its official tartan. He established the company when he emigrated to New York in 1921.

Once in the US, Doniger set up the business and introduced his Scottish plaids to New York and beyond. McGregor is now owned by a Dutch company

Models wearing McGregor clothing from the company founded in New York in 1927

Models wearing McGregor clothing from the company founded in New York in 1927

In evidence filed as part of the case, the McGregor label’s lawyers said: ‘Today, the McGregor brand still stands for quality, a sophisticated collegiate lifestyle and that unique ability that America has of combining European tradition with a leisure sporting life.

‘It’s a long way from those first tartan caps to the collections of today, but McGregor is sure that Doniger would still recognise McGregor’s collection as being his own and be proud that his clan still has influence on the wardrobes of thousands of discerning men, women and juniors across the world.’

They added: ‘The overall impression produced by the contested trademark may lead the public to believe that the goods at issue derive, at the very least, from companies which are linked economically, in which case the likelihood of confusion must be held to be established.’ 

In February 2013, senior figures at the UFC announced they had signed McGregor as part of a multi-fight contract.

McGregor, who was born in the Crumlin area of Dublin, became only the second fighter from Ireland to compete for the company after Tom Egan.

In 2017 he switched to boxing and lost to Floyd Mayweather in a multi-million dollar bout in Las Vegas. 

McGregor’s representatives have been contacted for comment. 

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