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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in Trademark Dispute with Filipino Deodorant Maker

It's shaping up to be a long legal battle.
IMAGE KARWAI TANG
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Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle—the Duke and Duchess of Sussex—have filed a trademark legal challenge against a Filipino business owner. Through the couple’s legal entity Cobblestone Lane LLC, the royals are opposing the use of the term “Archewell Harvatera,” which is the name the businessman is using for his brand of tawas deodorants. 

The businessman has even posted a video about the product: 

But “Archewell” also happens to be the name of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s foundation, which the couple founded in 2020.

In documents obtained by the website World Trademark Review, businessman Victor Martin Soriano reportedly filed an application for the term “Archewell Harvatera” in July 2020 under cosmetics and fragrance. One month after the application was posted by the Intellectual Property of the Philippines (IPOPH), Soriano received the opposition notice from Cobblestone Lane LLC, which said it needed “additional time” to notarize and apostille relevant documents in the United States and have the original documents sent to the Philippines.

WTR tracked down a tweet from Soriano, who said that he was frustrated about the legal process:

In December 2020, Soriano tweeted fighting words: “ARCHEWELL is now a registered trademark in the Philippines (And it's not a former British colony). English laws don't work here.”

 

 

Soriano is referring to an application for trademark for the term “Archewell” filed in July 2020 by Gina Agnes Sarabia of Iloilo (where Soriano is also named as representative). Sarabia Jewellery is already using the Archewell name in a line of engagement rings.   

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According to WTR, Soriano has also already filed a new application to trademark the term “Archewell Cosmetics,” signaling that he remains unfazed by the opposition from the British royals.

Meanwhile, in an article by The Daily Guardian, Soriano has reportedly expressed confidence that the Philippines’ IP Office “will pay no credence to Cobblestone’s opposition since, being a foundation, Archewell is not a business competitor of Archewell Harvatera.”

This isn’t the first time that Prince Harry and Meghan have lodged legal complaints to protect their brand. The WTR says that they also attempted to trademark “Sussex Royal” last year, which didn’t go over so well as it led to numerous hurdles and oppositions. The royal couple eventually dropped the trademark application for “Sussex Royal” and turned to “Archewell” instead.

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Paul John Caña
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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