In Benihana Case, Slicing and Dicing of Trademark Rights To Licensee Proves Problematic
A dispute that began with an unauthorized burger placed on a menu by a licensee recently culminated in the dismissal of the latest lawsuit between feuding factions of Benihana, the Japanese teppanyaki restaurant chain. In early March, the US District Court in the Southern District of New York dismissed a lawsuit brought by Benihana of Tokyo LLC (“BOT”) against its American counterpart, Benihana, Inc. (“BI”) that raised claims of breach of contract and breach of good faith, and highlighted the risks of splitting trademark rights between geographic territories.
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