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Corporate Bully Monster Energy Drinks Strikes Again At Small Business

Rehab needs you! Well not in that sense but do read on.... Rehab London, a natural mens grooming range and small British business, is attempting to fight corporate bullying tactics by major US drinks corporation, Monster Energy Drinks. Monster has always been aggressively protective of anyone attempting to use the word Monster and now it seems this aggression has been extended to include the word Rehab. Monster Rehab was trademarked in categories 5, 30, and 32, all drink related trademark categories, in 2010. Rehab London has filed an application to renew trademark category 3 grooming and added categories 35 covering salons and spas and category 25 which covers promotional clothing in 2011. Monster Rehab has filed an aggressive opposition against all the above Rehab London categories citing use of the word Rehab and claiming it may confuse the brand and is an infringement upon Monster Drinks. Monster is represented by Europes largest law firm, Bird and Bird. Commonsense will prevail over Monsters position and opinion is that the ruling with go in Rehab Londons favour, but not before Rehab London will be forced to pay thousands upon thousands in legal fees to protect themselves. This is often the strategy used by Monster as these punitive costs, which can run into tens of thousands of pounds, can end up destroying small businesses that are seen as an inconvenience to corporations like Monster Energy Drinks. Attached is the initial letter written by Lisa Hilton, CEO of Rehab London, pleading with Monster Energy and outlining how there is no trademark category crossover or category infringement between the brands. She received no response so to save her company turned to social media to hear the voice of the consumer.

On the 22 August a social media campaign was launched through Twitter #FightTheMonster reaching over 1.5 million people and being shared by over 100,000 people worldwide. Some also took to tweeting Monster directly informing them that they were regarded as a corporate bully. Unfortunately, since Rehab Londons social media strategy a number of other Monster victims have come forward. In 2009, Monster took to Vermont Beer to court for having a Monster Beer and in 2011 tried to shut down Monster Fish Aquarium for selling Monster fish and using the M as a single logo on merchandise issuing them with a notice to cease trading in the US. Up until this point, these small businesses had incurred enormous legal fees, which is what Rehab London is trying to avoid. Post Rehabs social media campaign, and up to the point of this press release being issued, Rehab London has had no correspondence from either Monster Energy Drinks or their lawyers Bird and Bird. Monster declared profits of over $550 million last financial year with the third biggest shareholder being the investment sector of British bank Barclays Wealth, creating an additional heavily discussed twitter topic against Barclays. Rehab London has until 29 September for Monster Energy Drinks to withdraw their application or face crippling legal fees. Please look to support this small British business by sharing this story through bloggers, printed press or any other means. So far the online voice has been encouragingly strong with many interested in the outcome of this campaign.
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