Brewdog accused of 'bullying' tactics over pub name dispute

Scottish brewing giant Brewdog has been accused of hypocrisy after it was revealed the company had forced a small pub in England to change its name following a dispute over branding.

Published 27th Mar 2017
Updated 27 th Mar 2017

The Guardian reported that the Scottish brewers had threatened legal action if the small family-run pub in Birmingham didn't change the name of their pub, Lone Wolf, as it clashed with the branding for Brewdog's new spirits range.

The national newspaper said that the team behind the pub, Joshua and Sallie McFadyen, felt "too scared" to fight back, due to the brewing company's financial clout, particularly when the threat of having to "incur their legal costs" cited in the original email sent to them left the pair "panic-stricken”.

The McFadyens say they chose the original name before Brewdog released their new brand and picked it due to personal reasons.

They have since changed the name of their pub from the Lone Wolf to The Wolf, paying for the expenditure out of their own pocket.

Brewdog has reportedly backed down over the case, with co-founder James Watt blaming “trigger-happy” lawyers for the legal action in a Tweet released on his personal account.

The Birmingham pub then quoted the Tweet from their own official account saying that it was a "shame" they had they had to "spend money rebranding because of 'lawyers'".

The move has left more than a few Brewdog fans with a bad taste in their mouth, with many taking to Twitter to call on the brand to reimburse the costs for changing the signage and name.

It's not the first time the Lone Wolf branding has led Brewdog into a legal dispute.

In May last year, they were threatened with legal action by Wolverhampton Wanderers over the brewer's use of the Wolf's head logo, which the Championship club said had a striking resemblance to their patented Wolves emblem.

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