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If Abercrombie & Fitch Co. has its way, Beyoncé Knowles’ recently announced fragrance may not be too fierce.
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. wants to block Beyoncé Knowles from launching a fragrance under the name of her alter ego, Sasha Fierce, in her deal with Coty Inc.
This story first appeared in the September 17, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The teen retailer alleged in a federal complaint filed Tuesday that a scent with that label would infringe on its own Fierce cologne trademark.
But Coty said Wednesday Knowles’ dual personality would not factor into plans for her perfume, which will be sold in department stores globally and launch in the Americas in the spring.
“We can confirm at this time…that the terms Fierce and Sasha Fierce are not being used as names of a Beyoncé fragrance,” a Coty spokeswoman said.
The singer, who disclosed the deal to WWD on Monday, did not provide a name for the fragrance.
Her attorney did not respond Wednesday to calls seeking comment.
In its complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Columbus, Ohio, Abercrombie said it began selling its own Fierce scent in 2002 and trademarked the men’s cologne brand in 2003.
Knowles filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in September 2008 for the Sasha Fierce mark in the fragrance category, according to court documents.
Abercrombie says it asked her to cease and desist after it became aware of the filing, but the star continued to pursue the trademark. The company filed a still-pending opposition to Knowles’ trademark application in May, according to federal records.
Abercrombie’s suit alleged that a Sasha Fierce fragrance would pose a “likelihood of confusion” for consumers.
The New Albany, Ohio-based retailer said Fierce is both a literal and figurative trademark. In addition to selling the cologne to consumers directly, the company said it spent more than $3 million in the last two years on scent machines that generate the fragrance throughout the 352 locations of its Abercrombie & Fitch division.
“A&F’s intent is that all garments that leave the store have the Fierce scent attached to them,” the company’s attorneys wrote.
The firm said it projects $64 million in sales of the fragrance this year and that the cologne’s revenues have totaled more than $190 million to date.
Abercrombie is seeking an injunction to stop Knowles’ use of the Fierce mark for fragrance and attorneys’ fees, among other remedies.