Aldi has set its sights on securing the legal trademark for its Cuthbert cake brand, following on from the infamous Colin the caterpillar cake row with Marks and Spencer, which was settled last month in the high court.
In addition to cake and other food produce, Aldi has filed for the trademark application to apply to a long list of general merchandise, ranging from soft toys and stationery to coasters and other houseware.
This latest opportunity looks set to capitalise on the publicity generated by last year’s legal action while also building upon the successes M&S has seen with its caterpillar cake brand, Colin.
Aldi has been making the most of Cuthbert’s newly-found star quality with a number of attention-grabbing stunts, including dropping one of the cakes from 40,000 ft in a parachute to raise money for cancer charities.
Cuthbert also cameoed in Aldi’s Christmas advert this year, with a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it appearance seeing him being led away by the police.
The public controversy first began last year, when M&S filed a intellectual property (IP) claim with the high court alleging that Cuthbert was a trademark infringement against its own Colin the Caterpillar product.
Earlier this month it emerged the two retailers had reached a confidential agreement back in November. A M&S spokesperson told Retail Gazette at the time: “The objective of the claim was to protect the IP in our Colin the Caterpillar cake, and we are very pleased with the outcome.”
The original application filed by M&S was asking for Aldi to remove Cuthbert from sale. The publicity generated by the case benefitted both parties, leaving IP experts unsure who had gained most from the dispute.