LOS ANGELES – Lawyers for the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival are suing a similarly named event in West Africa for alleged trademark infringement, according to court documents obtained Thursday.
The lawsuit filed in federal court in Los Angeles on Wednesday evening alleges that Afrochella Ltd., which promotes an annual multi-day music and arts event in Ghana, is doing business under a name “confusingly similar” to the Coachella brand.
Organizers of the popular Coachella festival are also pursuing cybersquatting lawsuits against Afrochella Ltd. for the use of the domain name afrochella.com.
An attachment to the lawsuit shows that the US Patent and Trademark Office rejected a trademark application for Afrochella four years ago because of an overly broad description of the event. The office also suggested that “a previously filed pending application may constitute an obstacle to the registration of the applicant’s mark”.
A representative for Afrochella could not immediately be reached for comment.
Coachella organizers have filed numerous lawsuits for alleged trademark infringement over the use of “chella”. Most recently, the music festival agreed to settle a lawsuit against Live Nation Entertainment Inc. for promoting the Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians’ “Coachella Day One 22” concert. The terms of the settlement were not made public.