Rémy Cointreau has settled its Cognac lawsuit with Sire Spirits, the drinks company owned by US rapper 50 Cent.
In 2021, Rémy filed a legal case against Sire Spirits and its glass bottle manufacturer Vetroelite. The case claimed Sire Spirits had infringed on the design of Rémy’s circular Cognac packaging.
No financial outcome has been disclosed, as both parties agreed to end the case this month by voluntary dismissal with prejudice, meaning the issue cannot be raised again. Each side is also responsible for their own fees and costs associated with the case.
The fillings for the dispute have been sealed as they are alleged to hold sensitive company data.
The original court filing stated: “Defendants [Sire Spirits] have willfully and blatantly designed their bottle to unfairly capitalise on the goodwill and reputation that Plaintiff’s [Rémy] bottle has achieved and to unabashedly profit from its bad faith infringement.”
Initially, the case was dismissed in 2022 by US District Judge Alvin Hellerstein, as he believed Rémy had not done enough to lay out the branding of its bottle and why it should be a protected design. Rémy subsequently amended its case to include branding distinctions it claimed to be unique to its product, such as circular with scalloped edges.
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Rémy said in a statement to Law360: “Remy appreciates and respects Mr. Jackson’s entry into the Cognac market and the parties share a common vision for the future of this exceptional and precious spirit. The parties are gratified that this matter could be resolved amicably.”
Just Drinks contacted both parties in relation to this story.
In April, the Rémy Martin Cognac and Cointreau liqueur brand owner said it expected sales to “strongly decline” in the next six months on the back of weakening US demand for spirits and a tough previous year.
Rémy’s CFO Luca Marotta said the decline in first-half sales would be followed by recovery between September 2023 and March 2024, driven by a sharp bounce from the US starting in its third quarter.