Legal dispute erupts over Gordon’s logo

UPDATE #2 Robby Gordon Statement about Speed Energy Logo:
"To our fans and SPEED Energy supporters, I am happy to announce that we were able to reach a mutually beneficial settlement of our dispute with Specialized Bicycles regarding logos, and we will soon be selling all of our same merchandise with our new SPEED Energy Logo. In fact, we anticipate having merchandise with the new SPEED Energy logo available for on-line purchase between December 18th-20th with shipping available for holiday delivery. In the meantime, merchandise with the old logo has been discontinued. SPEED Energy plans to have energy drink products with the new SPEED logo available in stores in early January 2011. Please continue to check back for updates on when and where products will be available in your area. We want to thank you for your continued support of SPEED Energy and Robby Gordon Motorsports. We believe the new look of the product and merchandise is cooler than anything you've seen." Planet Robby

12/10/10 Robby Gordon, involved in a legal battle with Specialized Bicycle Components, has altered the logo for his Speed Energy drink. A settlement in the case is likely, according to court filings, and apparently will come with the alteration of the logo, which keeps the two diagonal orange bars of the original Speed Energy logo but does not include the connecting bar that made it look more like the letter S. Specialized obtained an injunction in federal court last month to keep Gordon and Robby Gordon Motorsports from using his original logo on the new drink – which he is selling in order to fund his race team – after claiming that his logo looked too much like the one used by the bicycle company. The injunction was to go into effect once Specialized posted a $3 million bond to cover damages in the event it lost the lawsuit. According to recent court filings, no bond has been posted. The two sides participated in mediation Nov. 23 and "are now working towards a potential settlement of this action." Scene Daily

11/05/10 Robby Gordon launched his new Speed Energy drink last week in hopes of generating enough revenue for him to race next season.

But his Speed Energy drink has hit a speed bump. Gordon hopes the rollout of the drink doesn’t get stalled by the “S" logo on his car, driver uniform and on the drink bottle.

Gordon has sued Specialized Bicycle Components, which had sent him a cease-and-desist letter over his logo. Specialized now seeks an injunction in U.S. District Court in California to keep Gordon from using the logo he has used periodically since June on his race car in advance of the product launch last week. Specialized alleges that Gordon’s logo is too similar to its logo.

If Specialized prevails at the injunction hearing Nov. 15 and Gordon must change his labeling and logos before being able to sell the product, he might not be able to compete in NASCAR next year, Gordon said in court documents.

“If Speed Energy is unable to sell its energy drink products, it will not be able to sponsor our team in 2011," Gordon said in a statement to the court filed last week. “Without that sponsorship and the resulting revenue, … our NASCAR team would be devastated.

“We would no longer be in a position to field cars and personnel at race events."

Gordon, who filed his lawsuit in September, claims that he’s not in the bicycle business and therefore there cannot be confusion between the two logos. His Robby Gordon Motorsports organizations fields teams in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series with an occasional start in the Nationwide Series.

“We have expended millions of dollars in marketing costs, production costs, and legal and administrative expenses," Gordon said in the filing. “If we are not allowed to go to market with the Speed Energy products, the products that we have produced will become worthless, and the financial future of Speed Energy and its ability to go forward will be doubtful.

“It is our plan to have Speed Energy serve as the primary sponsor for our NASCAR team in 2011 and beyond. At this point, we have fully committed to that sponsorship program, and our team does not have other options."

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