Private equity firm Ares management files trademark infringement complaint against crypto exchange ARESCOIN

Quick Take

  • Ares Management LLC v. Starlight Capital Group, Inc., et al.
  • The defendants are allegedly launching a crypto exchange, ARESCOIN, as well as a couple of other offerings that have the name Ares in them
  • Ares alleges Starlight Capital not only used their name, but also the same font, and the same color scheme in their ARESCOIN logo
  • The actual location of the sole named human defendant, Nicholas Flint, who is listed as a founder of the project, is unknown

Disclaimer: These summaries are provided for educational purposes only by Nelson Rosario and Stephen Palley. They are not legal advice. These are our opinions only, aren’t authorized by any past, present or future client or employer. Also we might change our minds. We contain multitudes.

As always, Rosario summaries are “NMR” and Palley summaries are “SDP". This week’s guest post by Susan Joseph is “SJ”

[related id=1]Ares Management LLC v. Starlight Capital Group, Inc., et al., Case No. Civ-1:19-cv-00894-RBJ (D. Colo. March 25, 2019) [NMR]

What do you think of when you think about the most valuable companies in the world? Chances are you think about their brand. The distinctive imagery surrounding that company that is often evoked by the company’s logo and/or name. Companies invest a considerable amount of resources into brand development. One way that they protect that brand is through filing trademarks. Once a company receives a trademark they then have a duty to enforce it if they think people are misusing the mark in some fashion. This newly filed complaint deals with this exact issue. An established financial services firm is suing a blockchain startup for trademark infringement, unfair competition, and other matters.

Plaintiff, Ares Management LLC is a global asset manager that claims to have $131 billion of assets under management. Ares claims to have used the mark and trade name ARES since at least 1997 for their financial services and product offerings. In addition, they also claim to have at least 105 famous marks (whether a mark is considering famous is dependent on a variety of factors related to public perception of the mark) around the world that make use of the Ares name. The defendants run Starlight Capital Group, a crypto startup that is allegedly launching a crypto exchange, ARESCOIN, as well as a couple of other offerings that h