Trademark Fight Over Diddy’s Empress Perfume

by T+B Blog Team on January 19, 2012

In royal circles, the ranking goes something like this: Emperor and Empress, followed by King and Queen, then Viceroy and Vicereine, next Archduke and Archduchess, and then you jump down two more steps to the most famous royal couple, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and on to Prince and Princess.

Very few of us are born into royal families, but many people have been known to impersonate royalty, others just reach for the look; hence, the popularity of tiaras and clothing with embroidered crests. Then, there are others who reach for the perfumes with royal-sounding names: Diamond Princess Trina and Alexander McQueen Kingdom for women, The Baron, I Am King, and Tsar, for men.

Last summer, Sean Combs (a/k/a Puff Daddy, P. Diddy) launched a female fragrance, called Empress, to complement his I Am King men’s cologne. Now Sean John Fragrances is being sued for trademark infringement and unfair competition by Empress, Inc. and Empress Hair Care Products, claiming the fragrance targets identical markets.

In court documents, Empress alleges that a Sean John representative contacted the company last year requesting that it give up the Empress trademark in exchange for money. The company claims it refused the offer. Here’s a copy of the Empress trademark record from Corsearch® Advantage™:

Do you see a likelihood of confusion?

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