Red Bull challenges Redwell on name

The Redwell beer branding, designed by Norwich University of The Arts students for The Craft Brewing Company is at the centre of a trademark dispute with Red Bull.


Three students Jason Drake, Sam Povey, and Tim A’Court designed the brand following a period of engagement between the University’s Ideas Factory scheme and The Craft Brewing Co.

The range of beers launched in May and were named after Redwell Street in Norwich, where The Craft Brewing Co’s bar The Taphouse is located.

Benjamin Thompson, director of The Craft Brewing Co says that he has been contacted by Red Bull, which has requested that a Redwell trademark application be withdrawn.


Thompson says that ‘our trademark application was made to protect the work that the design students have done’.

Thompson confirms that he has received a letter in which Red Bull reasons that the Redwell and Red Bull names are too similar and are confusing consumers.

‘Our name is about our history and locality,’ says Thompson who adds, ‘They have a trademark on the name Red, and feel the second part of our name is enough to confuse customers as the “well” is descriptive and does not do enough for people to distinguish between the two.’

‘They are arguing that the brands are similar but the design is one of the most prominent things here, and shows how different they are,’ says Thompson.


When the beer launched in May, NUA business director Ed Walker said, ‘The brand required a sophisticated look that would hold its own equally in trendy east London pubs and more upmarket west London bars. Redwell is launching with a portfolio of different products including three lagers, an India Pale Ale and an American Pale Ale, so required an identity system with easy to interpret coding to allow customers to distinguish between the specific products.’

Norwich University of The Arts is aware of the developments but is choosing not to comment, and Red Bull will not confirm that it has contacted The Craft Brewing Company to request that Redwell changes its name. 

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