On Saturday, Lionel Messi comes to our hometown for a showdown with Nashville SC for the Leagues Cup championship. Tickets to the match are . . . not inexpensive.
Not surprisingly, Messi has taken the MLS by storm, scoring in every game since arriving in the league. Messi hasn’t just mastered the beautiful game. He has also implemented a masterful international trademark strategy with over 100 registered marks worldwide.
Most of the registrations are for either his name or his M logo:
Surprisingly, Messi’s only has one registration in the United States, which is for his M logo for a variety of common items, including phone cases, headphones, backpacks, sports bags, cloths, and soccer equipment.
Considering that Messi has dozens of registrations in Argentina, over 20 registrations in China, and multiple registrations in other jurisdictions, including the EU and UK, I would expect him to seek additional protection in the United States as his brand grows stronger stateside.
Notably, since the announcement that Messi would be coming to the MLS, multiple trademark applications have been filed by other parties looking to leverage the superstars name, including:
- MESSIAS305MIAMI for fan clubs
- MIAMI MESSI for clothing
- MESSI SOCCER TRAINING & PROMOTION for soccer training services
- MESSI10 for a variety of grooming products
- MESSIMIAMI for clothing
It is unlikely that any of these applications will mature into registrations unless Messi himself consents to registration. As we have blogged before, if a trademark application identifies a living individual, then the application must be accompanied by a written consent to registration by that individual. These applications are as doomed as a goalie waiting for Messi to take a penalty.
Two predictions: Messi keeps scoring for Inter Miami and keeps fortifying his trademark protection in the U.S. and around the world.