Major US fast food giant Jack in the Box says it’s partly responsible for crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried’s fortune, because his exchange allegedly ripped off its mascot, reports Law360.
On Thursday, Jack in the Box sued Bankman-Fried’s FTX over the launch of its “Moon Man” mascot last month.
The San Diego-headquartered burger joint is seeking damages for a total of seven complaints including unfair competition, trademark infringement, and trademark dilution.
There’s indeed some similarities between the two characters. They both have round spherical heads atop a human actor.
Jack in the Box’s complaint specifically points out both mascots have blue eyes, a nose, and a smile.
Although, Jack in the Box does claim the parallels go further than an oversized head. Jack in the Box’s lawyers said (via Law360, our emphasis):
“The two characters are strikingly similar in both appearance and behavior. For example, the Moon Man also changes his facial expressions and clothing attire throughout advertisements and appearances, just like Jack.”
According to FTX, the crypto exchange’s mascot “Moon Man” is intended to represent a moon (as in, “going to the moon,” and not a creepy fast food clown… thing.
Moon Man and Jack in the Box mascot could be brothers
In a short space of time, FTX founder Bankman-Fried has amassed more than $22 billion, and Jack in the Box is alleging its mascot is partly to thank.
As for Jack, he first appeared in the early ’90s and has featured in Jack in the Box TV commercials ever since.
According to the fast food chain, Moon Man is damaging Jack’s image.
“FTX’s Moon Man is a far inferior version of Jack that is now tarnishing Jack’s reputation to consumers,” it said in its complaint.
In June, Bankman-Fried’s FTX announced a sponsorship deal with Major League Baseball (MLB), touted as the first between a crypto exchange and a top US professional sports league.
Moon Man was conceived as part of that campaign. As part of the promotion, a home run over 425 was renamed a “moonblast” — likely a nod to crypto’s obsession with outer space price predictions.
Read more: [How Sam Bankman-Fried became crypto’s curliest billionaire in 4 years]
MLB umpire uniforms will also sport the FTX logo (another first), and the exchange has access to player highlights for content creation.
Baseball aside, FTX spent $135 million in March to put their logo on a basketball arena for nearly two decades.
And in August, the exchange signed a seven-year deal with a top League of Legends tournament.
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