A Brooklyn restaurant is being forced to change its name after a federal judge ruled its name, Faberge, is too close to that of the luxury jewellery company Fabergé.
Faberge, the restaurant, opened last year in Brooklyn’s Russian neighbourhood Sheepshead Bay. Unlike the jeweller, the restaurant spells its name without an accent, and replaced the letter ‘A’ with the Eiffel Tower in its logo (no, we don’t get the connection either). However, there was no doubt where owner Vladislav Yusufov got his inspiration from- the restaurant’s decor used almost an identical facade of gold and purple diamonds that feature on Fabergé’s Grafton Street boutique in London.
Yusufov claimed that he didn’t think their would be any problems, after all, he sells food and not jewellery, so he’s not in direct competition with Fabergé. Trademark infringement can only be prevented if it is likely to cause confusion with the trademark holder’s mark. Lawyers for Fabergé and, ultimately, the judge, didn’t see it this way, however. They argued that the use of the name was a “shameless” appropriation of its intellectual property. They said that Fabergé is a famous trademark and that the Defendants were diluting its quality. Furthermore, google searches for the real Fabergé often returns several adverts for the restaurant at 2007 Emmons Avenue.