Last month Sonja Morgan unveiled Tipsy Girl, a new prosecco she is promoting. It was widely predicted that Bethenny Frankel wouldn’t be too happy about the name given that Tipsy Girl sounds remarkably similar to Bethenny’s infamous Skinnygirl line. Now the two former frienemies are locked in a trademark dispute via their business entities.
Sonja’s business partner, Peter Guimares, dismissed the name similarities and argued that he had trademarked “Tipsy Girl” (two words) months earlier. At the time, Bethenny had no comment on her Real Housewives Of New York co-star’s tipsy business venture, but instead made a move to trademark the name “Tipsygirl” (one word!).
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Unfortunately Bethenny’s patent application was filed seven months after Sonja’s business partner filed his.
Peter argues that Bethenny is attempting to thwart Sonja’s business from succeeding.
Bethenny’s reps explained the decision as necessary. “We always focus on protecting Bethenny Frankel’s Skinnygirl intellectual property to mitigate any confusion in the marketplace.”
But Peter, Sonja’s business partner, calls Bethenny’s behavior “underhanded” and complains that Bethenny is “supposed to be Sonja’s friend.” I think we all know where Bethenny and business are concerned there is never any love lost!
Peter also threw some shade at Skinnygirl line by claiming that Bethenny is “threatened” by Sonja’s foray into the liquor business. Peter told Page Six Tipsy Girl “is not a copycat nor competition for Skinnygirl. We are not advocating that you will lose weight with our product.”
Peter is not dissuaded by Bethenny’s strike and says Tipsy Girl prosecco is ready to be distributed to restaurants in the NYC area, plus they have plans to expand into the tequila, vodka and wine division and sell in retail locations.
As for Bethenny’s attempt at trademarking “Tipsygirl” – Peter is taking legal action. “I have already retained an attorney to handle Miss Frankel’s sneaky and illegal move,” he said.
Sonja had no comment. But I do. Peter should have been smart enough to trademark the name both as two words and one. And he better hope Bethenny hasn’t bought the Tipsy Girl web domain! I also find it interesting that all this is playing out while RHONY is filming – and I wonder how much of this dispute will play-out during the season!
TELL US – IS BETHENNY BEING SMART OR SNEAKY?
[Photo Credits: IZZY/WENN.com & Joel Ginsburg/Wenn.com]