50 Cent is facing legal action in a case brought to court by French distiller Remy Martin.
The complaint alleges that the rapper’s ‘Branson’ cognac infringes on Remy Martin’s patent rights relating to its XO cognac bottle design. The case was filed in Manhattan federal court on 13th August.
The complaint alleges that 50 Cent (real name Curtis Jackson) and Sire Spirits applied for a design patent and federal trademark for cognac bottles in both 2019 and 2020.
Remy Martin outlines its case against Branson, calling the design a “blatant attempt” to trade on goodwill associated with it’s own USA brand, XO.
Remy Martin XO cognac is the second-best-selling cognac brand in the US, behind Hennessy.
Remy Martin underlines the details of its bottle as having a “circular array of raised flat and angled quadrilateral facets” around a wheel-like body that converge at a “centrally located circular surface.”
The distiller explains that it’s XO bottle is a world-renowned design, established through thirty-five years of extensive advertising, promotion and sales. The lawsuit also offers detailed diagrams of both brands’ bottle designs.
Sire launched Branson in 2018, and the infringing bottle has been available since the beginning of 2020.
Remy Martin also alleges that it has received numerous customer comments about the striking similarity between the two bottles.
The case is E. Remy Martin & Co. v. Sire Spirits LLC, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, No. 1:21-cv-06838.
Neither Sire Spirits, Remy Martin, nor its legal representatives have commented on the case.
For more on Remy Martin, head over to the brand’s official website.
For those unaware, XO stands for “Extra Old”: XO cognacs, as of April 2018, are made only from eaux-de-vie aged for a minimum of 10 years–an increase from the minimum of six years it was up until that point.
If you’re looking to try a bottle of XO, we put together a list of 11 of our favorite cognacs in the category.