Mayfair Platinum stands firm on trademark use

Mayfair 101 Group is defending a lawsuit over the right of its investor-facing brand, Mayfair Platinum, to use the word ‘platinum’, and has filed a cross claim against Platinum Asset Management seeking to revoke the word platinum from the trademark register.

The cross-claim states that platinum is a laudatory and descriptive term which is commonly used, including in the financial industry.

Mayfair 101 Group’s Managing Director James Mawhinney said, “The word ‘platinum’ is generic and descriptive of the quality of service which Mayfair Platinum’s investors receive. Our high customer satisfaction rating is testament to this.”

Mayfair Platinum filed its defence and cross-claim in the Federal Court on 17 January 2020, stating Platinum Asset Management should never have been allowed to trademark the word platinum in the Financial Services category.

The cross claim highlights the fact that other companies, including Visa Platinum, had already registered their trademarks in the same category prior to Platinum Asset Management.

Mayfair 101 has appointed Senior Counsel Matthew Darke, who recently represented Westpac following the Banking Royal Commission and is a leading advocate in intellectual property matters.

Platinum Asset Management has been facing its own challenges since Kerr Neilson stepped down as CEO in February 2018, with the company’s value falling significantly and outflows increasing.

New Platinum Asset Management CEO Andrew Clifford and his investment team declined to accept any bonuses in 2018-19 after what the fund manager described as a disappointing investment performance and a 17 per cent decline in annual profit.

Mayfair Platinum has seen a strong inflow of new investors since launching in July 2019 by issuing secured and unsecured notes to wholesale investors, a product utilised by many Australian corporates as part of their capital management strategy.

Mayfair 101 is a family-owned conglomerate that identifies, initiates and nurtures compelling business opportunities at scale. The group’s portfolio is focused towards growth companies and real estate where it can achieve reliable returns from quality assets. The Group operates an investment banking-style model and specialises in unlocking value by deploying capital and expertise to create value.

Mayfair 101’s wholly owned subsidiaries include its investor-facing brands Mayfair Platinum and M12 Global, a London-based company specialising in the issuance of retail bonds. Its brands have been established to attract investment from low interest rate regions that can be redeployed through the group to facilitate the growth of selected assets.

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