The unknown trade war for the brands that earn it millions

The unknown trade war for the brands that earn it millions

news of him Giannis Antetokounmpo they are generally goodwhether it’s his exploits competing for the Milwaukee Bucks jersey in the NBA or its commercial enterprises.

The Greek international ‘stag’ star has little to fear on the court, although this year’s exclusion from the Miami Heat seems with one of the wrong parentheses, nor far from them perhaps considering his performance in his business endeavors as well.

But it is rather a rule and not an exception, that the owners of strong brands often enter the process to defend them on a legal level and do not allow others to enrich themselves with their own name. Or with brands that are considered their personal property.

And Giannis belongs to this group category of sportsmen-entrepreneurs…

In the case of the 28-year-old basketball player, an unknown trade “war” seems to have broken out in recent years over the protection of his trademarks (against those who conspire against them), those who, as a rule, can bring him millions of euros in income, in addition to the income he earns every year from “gold” his contract with the Bucks and his agreements/collaborations with numerous sponsors, in the USA and in Greece.

Giannis Antetokounmpo does not let money “sleep” and invests his profits in various business ventures, as is known.

Of course, all is not “rosy” in business. According to information revealed in the city of Milwaukee, attorneys representing the player are said to have filed a total of at least 50 lawsuits against companies and individuals they believe have infringed or infringed on his trademarks.

Many of them concerned companies which sold goods on the Internet, as stated by a founding shareholder of an intellectual property law firm of Milwaukee, named John Fredrickson.

Some of these lawsuits allege illegal use of images of the famous basketball player or his jersey number (34) to sell products.

The magazine Milwaukee Magazine he adds however, that most cases were resolved within two or three months and did not involve significant litigation – at least the more specific ones – according to Mr Fredrickson. Apparently it’s a “war” that never ends…

The only “defeat”

Giannis Antetokounmpo’s lawyers appear to be implementing a ‘radical’ legal strategy for the hardy defend the precious Greek Freak brand, which is now established in the international market. A brand that comes from the particularly widespread nickname of the same.

It was, as reported by US media, the first trademark to be filed since May 2014, towards the end of his first competitive season in the “Mecca of Basketball” and registered in February 2018 (the Bucks ace has been based in the United States since 2013, when he was 19), covering apparel, backpacks and other merchandise, among others.

Since then, the player has also requested other brands, e.g. THE Greek Fr34k for use with various goods and services and the Greek Freak in entertainment services.

His only “loss” in this streak appears to be his second trademark claim against a Washington, D.C.-based spice company, Spiceology, in 2019, with the legal team representing Giannis (or at least one of them) to send a cease and desist letter because its products included a salty Mediterranean diet mix (made with herbs, dried onions, sun-dried tomatoes, chilli and orange peel powder) called Greek Freak.

The company ignored the warning, saying, according to reports in the United States, that it used the brand before it was linked to Antetokounmpo and still does so to market and sell its blend.

It’s at least once the Bucks star’s legal team hasn’t won, and one wonders if he has the right to use it in Washington as well.

In counter-argument, the Antetokounmpo camp claims that this mark would mean nothing to anyone before Giannis.

On the contrary, it is believed that his lawyers can had sent up to 300 cease-and-desist letters to companies they believed were infringing on their customers’ trademarks; before they come to sue, a step that precedes a trial.

An example used for the confusion caused by the tactics of some consumers was that while the impression was created that Antetokounmpo is related to yogurt sold under the Greek Freak brand, it is not.

Approaching the $100 million “barrier”.

His double MVP NBA and champion in 2021 with the Milwaukee Bucks he is approaching the “barrier” of 100 million dollars in annual income from all sources of income: contract, sponsors and other commercial agreements, commercial activities.

The previous year, his “turnover” had climbed to $86.5 million, with $42,492,492 representing the payout of his 2022-23 contract with the Stags, which will increase by $3.15 million for the new season (2023-24) to $45,640$0.084

Lately in business and its investment exposures, the formation of the joint venture (50%-50%) has been added with expat billionaire John Calamos Calamos Investments to create the Calamos Antetokounmpo Global Sustainable Equity Funds, a set of ESG funds available to investors.

He stands out from his sponsors the multi-year deal with Nike, which is expected to earn him $12 million a year.

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