The companies announced their withdrawal but could not make it difficult for Russia
According to Business Insider, a Russian fast-food chain called Uncle Vanya has filed to trademark the logo. But whether it’s accidental or intentional, Uncle Vanya’s new logo is said to bear a strong resemblance to McDonald’s iconic Golden Arches logo.
Specifically, on March 12, Uncle Vanya filed a trademark application with the Russian government, including a proposed logo that bears the shape of a stylized letter “B” with the words “Uncle Vanya” underneath with Russian.
Although the logo can be interpreted as the Cyrillic “Ve”, it matches the pronunciation of the Russian letter “V” in “Vanya”. But coincidentally, it apparently resembles McDonald’s giant “M” logo, a horizontal version. Even the image designed by Uncle Vanya uses the red and yellow tones associated with the McDonald’s brand.
In his profile, Uncle Vanya is listed as having a business address in Moscow. At the same time, the company said it offers “fast food” and “cooking and home delivery” services.
The application submission comes just three days after McDonald’s announced that it would be closing more than 800 of its restaurants in Russia indefinitely.
After the announcement, on social networks, a series of images of Moscow residents rushed to buy McDonald’s food. One die-hard fan even chained himself to a store to prevent the store from closing. Some people even collect dozens of hamburgers and store them in the refrigerator to eat gradually.
This scene reminds many people of the time when McDonald’s opened its first restaurant in Moscow in 1990. Russians welcome McDonald’s with as much enthusiasm as they welcome the famous band The Beatles.
Others are looking to make money in the moment, selling menu items, even McDonald’s cutlery sets and sugar packs at sky-high prices on Avito, a Russian version of Craigslist.
Russians store hamburgers in the refrigerator to eat gradually after the brand announced its closure.
“McDonald’s has announced that they will close. That’s okay. Tomorrow Russia will no longer have McDonald’s, but instead Uncle Vanya,” Vyacheslav Volodin, a spokesman for Russia’s parliament, said last week on the website. The Washington Post newspaper.
It is unclear how the Uncle Vanya brand was born, although the business shares the same name with a play by Russian playwright Anton Chekov. Neither Uncle Vanya’s intellectual property attorney Alexander Leonov nor a representative for McDonald’s could comment on the matter.
As for McDonald’s, the brand has a long history, having its first store outside the “Iron Curtain” in Moscow, just a few months before the breakup of the Soviet Union. Restaurants in Russia and Ukraine contribute 9% of the airline’s annual revenue, or about $2 billion.
On March 8, the company announced that all 850 McDonald’s restaurants will temporarily close. About 84% of branches in Russia are owned by McDonald’s, the rest are franchised. Owning more restaurants means greater revenue for the company, but also entails more risk in times of turmoil or economic downturn.
Not only McDonald’s, a series of popular brands have also announced their “escape” from Russia recently, such as Apple, Starbucks, Coca Cola, HM…
It is known that trademark applications came rushing in after Russia announced it would not enforce its intellectual property rules against companies from a list of “unfriendly countries” and declared leave. As a result, major brands such as McDonald’s and Starbucks are being copied by local companies, which have also filed trademark applications for logos with clearly copied trademarks.
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