Detroit City Soccer Club Trademark Application Denied

Proposed Detroit MLS stadium

A trademark application for Detroit City Soccer Club, which was registered for the city’s potential MLS club, has been denied. 

The MLS expansion effort led by Dan Gilbert and Tom Gores continues, and the group has been registering names for the prospective club. One of those applications to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office was filed on July 6, and included the name Detroit City Soccer Club. The federal agency has issued its ruling on that application, denying the trademark.

According to the agency’s decision, the Detroit City Soccer Club name is too similar to that of Detroit City Football Club, the Premier Development League team that plays its matches at Keyworth Stadium in Hamtramck. More from Crain’s Detroit Business:

“Registration of the applied-for mark DETROIT CITY SOCCER CLUB is refused as to classes 25 and 41 because of a likelihood of confusion with the mark DETROIT CITY FOOTBALL CLUB in U.S. Registration No. 4745316,” the trademark office said in its electronic letter to PS&E on Wednesday.

Detroit City FC has been playing since 2012 and is contemplating a move to a professional leagues. The team draws 5,000-plus fans per game. The trademark office ruled that PS&E’s trademark registration was too similar because people will focus on the “Detroit City” rather than the “Soccer Club” portion of the name, and that’s too similar to DCFC’s name.

A message seeking comment was left with a PS&E spokesman.

Crain’s also noted that Gores’ PS&E registered a federal trademark for the name Motor City Soccer Club in September, but that no federal action has been taken on that application to date. The group is expected to meet with MLS owners this month, and some progress has been made recently in the effort to secure its preferred stadium site.

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