Shot Blocked! USPTO Denies Angel Reese’s Trademark For ‘Bayou Barbie’

LSU v Iowa

Good luck finding a college basketball player more popular and marketable than Louisiana State’s Angel Reese. The Lady Tiger star has more than 2.5 million followers on Instagram and a name, image and likeness valuation north of $1.7 million. Despite all of her popularity and commercial appeal, Reese will not be permitted to capitalize on her nickname, “Bayou Barbie.”

The unstoppable Angel Reese wants more. And she makes no apologies for that - The Athletic

Reese was allegedly given the nickname based on her love for eyelash extensions, long nails and love of the color pink, but her style of play on the court is what endeared her to the Tiger faithful.

Despite the authentic origins of a nickname that the player embraces, the United States Trademark and Patent Office (USPTO) decided last November that Reese could not own the commercial rights to the exclusive use of that moniker.

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The USPTO determined that the term “Bayou Barbie” in use by Reese would create a likelihood of confusion for consumers who run the risk of mistakenly connecting Reese and her products to those made by MattelMAT -0.5%, the owner and toy manufacturer behind the $126 billion Barbie franchise.

The USPTO grounded its decision in the fact that Reese merely added the word “Bayou” to its attempt at trademark protecting a phrase that included the term “Barbie” and use it on clothing merchandise that Mattel also produces; including jackets, dresses, bathing suits, and T-shirts.

Angel Reese makes 'everybody hating' statement before vintage LSU performance - The Mirror US

So while Reese is not permitted to push forward with her personal brand that makes use of the term “Bayou Barbie”, nothing is preventing Mattel from reaching out to her for a possible collaboration.

Reese already has a multi-year NIL deal with Reebok so she already has experience with a major brand and on a national stage. This could be Mattel’s best chance to connect its products with a successful athlete who embraces the “Barbie” nickname and brand.

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Nevertheless, if Mattel doesn’t come calling to do business with the Barbie of the Bayou, then Reese will remain limited to enjoying being called that in private, while not being able to profit from the name in public.

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