Armadillo Enterprises, the parent company of Dean Guitars and Luna Guitars, has responded to Gibson’s multi-million dollar trademark infringement lawsuit. Dean Guitars CEO Evan Rubinson says that Gibson’s claims “are entirely baseless”.
Dean Guitars CEO responds to Gibson Lawsuit
A letter sent out to the Armadillo’s dealer network has just surfaced on Reddit. In the letter, CEO and President Evan Rubinson has told his commercial partners that he wants to give “an accurate and complete story about Gibson’s claims, which we believe are entirely baseless, and alleviate any concerns Gibson’s unfortunate tactics may have caused you”.
In the letter he goes on to say “You may have received a letter from Gibson saying that it decided to ‘pursue actions’ against us in connection with the alleged ‘copying’ of the Flying V, Explorer, and ES-335 guitar shapes”
He then refers to alleged “demands” made by Gibson in relation to Dean Guitar’s V and Z shape guitars.
43 year-old iconic American-based guitar company
He describes Dean Guitars as “43-year-old iconic American-based guitar company”. He goes on:
“Dean Guitars has been continuously offering the V- and Z-shaped guitars since at least 1976 – for over the past 40 years. These guitars have been widely seen and promoted for decades, including in popular music videos, on stages with famous artists across the globe, at trade shows, and other prominent industry events … Many other companies have been using these generic shapes for decades… we believe the alleged ‘Flying V’ and ‘Explorer’ shapes are unprotectable and Gibson’s trademark registrations should be invalidated … If Gibson pursues its claims, we will vigorously defend ourselves and seek to cancel Gibson’s alleged trademark registrations.”
Gibson also has a complaint against Luna’s take on the ES style. Rubinson had this to say:
“Dean Guitars – together with a number of other guitar makers – have already initiated an opposition proceeding before the US Patent and Trademark Office in a collective industry effort to curb Gibson’s attempts to claim exclusive rights to this generic shape … We respect and value the intellectual property rights of others … But we also recognise that some things are just too common and basic for one company to claim as their own property.”
Looks like Dean Guitars aren’t backing down and will protect their company from Gibson’s accusations. Could be an interesting few days in the world of guitars!