“Who the Best?”
Looks like we need a law akin to the anti-cybersquatting act to be enacted, except as it relates to trademarks, to stop people like Curtis Bordenave and his company Business Moves Consulting from beating people to the United State Patent and Trademark Office and registering marks of famous names, brands, or the like in an effort to either sell them to the rightful owners of the marks or to otherwise make a profit off the mark for themselves.
Whatever the reason Bordenave did it, DJ Khaled is NOT taking it lying down. Bordenave sought to register a number of marks linked to DJ Khaled’s son’s name – Asahd. The marks (Asahd, Asahd Couture, and A.S.A.H.D A Son and His Dad, We the Best Lifestyle) were filed with the USPTO shortly after Asahd’s birth. Instead of filing an opposition to the marks when they reached the publication stage, DJ Khaled decided to file a civil action alleging violation of DJ Khaled and Asahd’s publicity rights, federal trademark infringement and unfair competition, common law trademark and unfair competition, and defamation. Khaled also seeks declaratory relief in the nature of confirmation that its collaboration with the Jordan brand does not infringe on any of Bordenave’s purported rights in his trademarks.
Apparently Bordenave is in the business of registering marks of celebrities and more specifically their children, before their own actual parents can even think about exploiting their kids in any way. Bordenave has filed trademark registrations in the name of Cardi B, Stormi Couture (Kylie Jenner’s daughter is named Stormi), Cynthia Bailey Eyewear, Celebrity Boxing, and Sirius to name a few.
The USPTO rejected the application for the name ASAHD on the grounds of likelihood of confusion with Khaled’s son, so Bordenave filed more applications linked to the DJ Khaled brand. More marks were registered after the partnership between DJ Khaled’s son and Jordan was announced. Defendants claim they’re selling t-shirts with the ASAHD mark on it and the shirts can be found on their Instagram pages.
I’m not quite sure why the USPTO entertained any of this madness, but that’s why it’s incumbent on trademark owners or brand owners to actively police their marks and their brands. Someone on Khaled’s team should have been alerted to these marks once they reached the publication stage and put a halt to it before it went any further. Once a mark is registered, it’s hard to defeat. But based on the complaint, Bordenave has his work cut out for him.