Michael Jordan scored a sweet victory over a grocery store chain that used his logo to sell their merchandise without seeking his consent. The jurors awarded Jordan $8.9 million for invoking his name without his permission.
The jury appointed to delegate if Michael Jordan’s intellectual property was used without his approval proved just how much the “Jumpman” logo is currently worth. The awarded settlement is quite close to the $10 million Jordan’s attorneys had pegged the logo’s usage to be worth. An elated Jordan hugged his lawyers after the decision was read, but categorically mentioned it was never about the money.
“It was all just about protecting my name and my likeness. I’m so used to playing on a different court. This shows I will protect my name to the fullest…. It’s my name and I’ve worked hard for it for 30-something years and I’m not just going to let someone take it. It’s not the type of court I like to win at. But unfortunately we ended up in this court, and I’m very happy with the result.”
What’s interesting about the trial is that before the case even went to trial, the court had already decided Dominick’s, the grocery store chain that used Jordan’s logo, was at fault and that the logo shouldn’t have been used without Jordan’s express permission, reported Fox News. The jury only had to decide how much the grocer would have to cough up.
At the heart of the case was an advertisement for steaks that ran back in 2009. The ad not only used Michael Jordan’s iconic basketball jersey number, but it also featured a logo that looked strikingly similar to Jordan’s trademark “Jumpman” logo. The ad had appeared in an issue of Sports Illustrated along with a $2.00 off coupon, reported The Inquisitr.
As for the seemingly astronomical sum Dominick’s was asked to pay Michael Jordan, one of the latter’s many lawyers, Fred Sperling, made it a point to mention the NBA legend made $100 million in endorsements last year, and the sum was more than what he made from playing basketball “in the entirety of his career,” MSN reported.
Jordan mentioned in his testimony that he sticks to long-term deals that are expected to be worth $10 million or more and would “never” have agreed to have his insignia used in an ad which lowered him to the equivalent of a piece of meat and had the added derogation of a two dollar coupon.
[Photos by Charley Gallay/Getty Images, Coupons in the News]