A Swiss watchmaker and a Brooklyn, New York deli owner walk into a court ... again. Yes, on the heels of a bitter battle initiated by Rolex in 2011, Rolex Deli has been hit with another lawsuit by Rolex Watch U.S.A., the U.S. counterpart for the famed Swiss watchmaker. You may recall that the watchmaker brought suit against the Brooklyn-based deli in late 2011 for trademark infringement, claiming that the sandwich shop's name would cause confusion amongst consumers, who might believe that the watchmaker was connected to or endorsed the deli.
Following that lawsuit, the deli - which is located at 700 Fulton Street between the Boerum Hill and Clinton Hill neighborhoods - changed its name to “Roll-x Deli," but the watchmaker still is not satisfied. Deli owner, Shawqu Ali, is facing $20,000 in civil contempt fines for taking too long to change the name on the store's sign, changing it in Marc, instead of by October as ordered by the court. And in case that is not enough, Rolex has filed a new suit against Ali, who admits that he chose the original name because he likes Rolex watches.
Legal counsel for Rolex has argued that the deli's new name will confuse customers into thinking that its products maintain the “quality and prestige” of the world renowned timepieces.
UPDATE (11/20/2013): The parties appear to have settled the matter out of court prior to trial, as Rolex filed a motion to voluntarily dismiss the lawsuit. The terms of the settlement are confidential, but it is worth noting that signage on the deli has been changed to "Genuine Deli."