Did this Chinese Apparel Company Rip Off Under Armour?
The logo for Chinese sports apparel company Uncle Martian looks pretty familiar. It's a "U" stacked on top of an upside-down U—almost like Baltimore-based Under Armour's logo of the interlinked "UA."
Coincidence? Uncle Martian says so. According to The Wall Street Journal, Uncle Martian has dismissed allegations that its logo bears a resemblance to Under Armour's. A spokesperson for Uncle Martian said this week that the brand has "nothing to do" with the Baltimore company, and that Under Armour hasn't yet made any formal complaint about the logo's likeness. But The Wall Street Journal reported that Under Armour has threatened legal action.
"We're focusing on developing our own brand, and our brand has nothing to do with theirs at all," Zheng Maoxin, head of marketing for Uncle Martian's parent company, Fujian Tingfeilong Sports Goods Co. Ltd., said to The Wall Street Journal. "I wouldn't comment on those online rumors. Our brand has been authorized by the Administration for Industry and Commerce, so how does that not count?"
Erick Haskell, managing director of Under Armour Greater China, told The Wall Street Journal in a statement that the company will pursue legal action.
"Uncle Martian's uses of Under Armour's famous logo, name and other intellectual property are a serious concern and blatant infringement," Haskell told The Wall Street Journal. "Under Armour will vigorously pursue all business and legal courses of action."
The companies' respective Chinese names aren't that far off, either. Uncle Martian's Chinese name, Ankemading, is strikingly similar to Under Armour's—Andema.
The Wall Street Journal also reported that one social media critic noticed that a "Certificate of Incorporation" on Uncle Martian's website actually belongs to Under Armour.