08:27, March 27 385 0 theguardian.com

2017-03-27 08:27:02
Brewdog backs down over Lone Wolf pub trademark dispute

Brewdog, the self-described “punk” beer company, has backed down in a row over the name of a family-run pub, blaming “trigger-happy” lawyers for the legal action.

The brother-and-sister team behind the Wolf pub in Birmingham were forced to drop their original plan to name the establishment the Lone Wolf, after receiving a legal warning from Brewdog, which has launched a spirit bearing the same name.

But Brewdog founder James Watt announced a change of heart on Monday after the Guardian’s report sparked a backlash that saw the firm, a vocal critic of large, faceless brewing firms, accused of acting like “just another multinational corporate machine”.

Watt tweeted:

James Watt (@BrewDogJames)

Our lawyers got a bit trigger happy. We are happy for the Lone Wolf Bar in Birmingham to keep using the name.

March 27, 2017

He also offered to send the pub some cases of the brewer’s new spirits range.

Brewdog had initially declined to comment on the trademark dispute.

Joshua and Sallie McFadyen, who run the Wolf, welcomed the gesture but used their own Twitter account to indicate they weren’t entirely satisfied with Watt offering his permission to let them use the name:

The Wolf Birmingham (@TheWolfBham)

Shame we had to spend money rebranding because of 'lawyers' #independent #CraftBeer https://t.co/xlyEbbnAP3

March 27, 2017

Other Twitter users suggested Brewdog might like to reimburse the McFadyens for the costs incurred in changing their signage and web page after Brewdog’s legal threat:

Michael_Gee (@Michael_Gee)

A nicer gesture @BrewDogJames might be reimbursing @TheWolfBham any money they might've already spent on rebranding?

March 27, 2017

Brewdog has raised money through an “Equity for Punks” scheme that allows drinkers to invest in return for shares and benefits such as discounts in its bars. But its rapid growth, which it recently said could lead to new investment and a stock market float, has made it harder for the company to maintain its underdog status.

Brewdog’s credentials as a challenger brand were called into question by beer industry figures, including some of its own investors.

Dr. Matt Lodder

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