Central City Wins Legal Battle With Bear Republic

SURREY, BC – As first reported in February, Bear Republic Brewery of Healdsburg, California filed a lawsuit against Central City Brewing alleging that Central City’s Red Racer brand constituted trademark infringement on their Racer 5 IPA and Red Rocket Ale brands.

The original complaint was lodged in January, followed by a series of responses and motions between the two breweries in the following months. The case was reviewed by Robert B. Collings, Magistrate Judge of the United States District Court in Massachusetts, and earlier this month Judge Collings issued a ruling denying Bear Republic’s motion for an injunction against Central City.

The full ruling can be read a leagle.com, but it is summed up neatly in Judge Collings’ conclusion:

After carefully weighing the relevant factors, the Court concludes that Bear Republic has failed to show a likelihood of success in establishing that Central City’s RED RACER mark infringes the RACER 5 or RED ROCKET marks. At best, Bear Republic has presented evidence that would permit a finding of a similarity of goods, trade and advertising channels, prospective customers, as well as a finding that RACER 5 is a strong mark. The remaining factors, in particular the similarity of the marks analysis, persuade the Court that Bear Republic would not be likely to succeed on the merits of the claim. Consideration of the marks in their entirety and the way in which a typical consumer would encounter the products in the marketplace does not support a finding of likelihood of confusion.

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