McDonald's hits back at Supermac's in European brand war

Pat McDonagh

by Gordon Deegan

Fast food giant, McDonald's has hit back at Supermac's in the latest round of the European brand war between the two firms.

This follows the US firm lodging a fresh 40-page submission with the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) as it seeks to prevent Supermac's expanding its brand across Europe.

Advancing its case earlier this year for the registration of the Supermac's brand in Europe, the Galway firm stated that it has operated since 1978 as Supermac's in Ireland without any complaint from McDonald's whatsoever.

Supermac's argued that the two businesses have traded without confusion in Ireland for 40 years.

The Supermac’s submission also stated that as a keen schoolboy footballer in the 1960s at the Carmelite College in Moate, Co Westmeath, CEO, Pat McDonagh’s moniker was ‘Supermac’.

However, in its rebuttal, McDonald's state that facts around Supermac’s history and the alleged long-standing co-existence of McDonald's and Supermac's and their trademarks in Ireland “are of no relevance” to the current proceedings.

McDonald's also claim that the Supermac’s argument that McDonald's opposition of the Supermac’s brand is potentially an abuse of McDonald's position as the number one fast-food chain in Europe “cannot prosper”.

McDonald's maintain that there remains a likelihood of confusion between the two brands and that Supermac's has not provided any convincing arguments to counter that and has asked the EUIPO to refuse the Supermac's application accordingly.

Yesterday, Supermac's supremo, Pat McDonagh said that he remains confident that his firm’s application will be successful.

He said: “Absolutely, if logic and common sense prevails. We should be successful. We await the decision of the EUIPO.”

In the David & Goliath battle, Supermac's has been trying to operate its brand in Europe since 2014 and already, an earlier brand application was turned down in 2016 by the EUIPO after an objection by McDonald's.

Supermac's lodged a revised application in 2016 with McDonald's objecting once more.

A decision is expected by the EUIPO on the application in the next number of months.

Most Read in Business