Apple Inc and The Beatles’ company Apple Corp. Ltd. have announced that the two parties have mutually entered into a new agreement that concerns the use of the name “Apple” and all apple logos, which replaces their 1991 Agreement.
In fact, last year Beatles’ Apple Corps had filed a lawsuit against California-based Apple Computer and its iTunes service for the third time in the last twenty years. During the 2006 lawsuit, The Beatles claimed that iTunes, which is Apple’s software for its popular iPod digital music player, was violating a 1991 contract that prohibited Apple from using the name “apple” or even an apple logo in connection with any music distribution.
In actual fact, the pact between Apple and The Beatles Corps was reached before the birth of the commercial Internet. But it is also widely known that The Beatles have used their apple logo ever since the 1960s.
Under the new agreement, Apple Inc. will own all of the trademarks related to “Apple”, and will also license those trademarks back to Apple Corps for their continued use. Besides, the ongoing trademark lawsuit between Apple Inc. and The Beatles Corps will finally come to an end after all these years, with each party bearing its own legal costs. Moreover, Apple Inc. will continue to use its name and logos on iTunes.
According to Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO who commented on the settlement, “We love the Beatles, and it has been painful being at odds with them over these trademarks. It feels great to resolve this in a positive manner, and in a way that should remove the potential of further disagreements in the future.”
On behalf of the shareholders of Apple Corp., Neil Aspinall, manager of Apple Corps, commented on the settlement, “It is great to put this dispute behind us and move on. The years ahead are going to be very exciting times for us. We wish Apple Inc. every success and look forward to many years of peaceful co-operation with them.”