Mother owner faces legal action from London agency Other Creative for ‘passing off’

Other, founded in 1996, claims Mother’s new agency launched last October has caused it 'loss and damage'.

Websites of Other Creative and Mother's Other
Websites of Other Creative and Mother's Other

Other Creative, a London-based business that has been in operation since 1996 and trades as Other, has filed a claim in the High Court against Mother Family Ltd, the parent company of Mother London, over its use of the name “Other” for the spin-off shop launched last October.

In its court filing, Other Creative – led by chief executive Jon Dobinson – argued that both companies provided creative consultancy services, and that by using the name Other, Mother had “passed off” itself as either being connected to Other Creative, being endorsed or approved by it, or having a commercial relationship with it. 

The filing claimed: "By reason of Mother's acts of passing off, Other has suffered loss and damage."

It added that it was “not currently aware of any instances of deception, but will rely on any instances of deception which subsequently come to light during disclosure or other means of eliciting facts”. 

Other Creative has requested an injunction preventing Mother from using the name Other, an order for it to surrender the web address other.london, damages and costs.

In its response, Mother rejected a number of the claims made by Other Creative, referring to several as “embarrassing” – a legal term of art that refers to a claim that is difficult to prove or disprove because it is vague or ambiguous.

Other Creative does not have a registered trademark for the name Other. Dobinson said that Other Creative had subsequently taken action to register the trademark, but pointed out that a registered trademark is not necessary to make a claim of passing off.

A spokesperson for Mother Family said: “We’re not in a position to comment as we’re currently engaged in discussions with Jon Dobinson.”

Other Creative lodged its claim in March, with Mother submitting its response in April, and Other Creative submitting a reply to this in June. Other Creative is being represented by law firm Venner Shipley, while Mother is represented by Lewis Silkin.

Work by Other Creative that has appeared in Campaign includes a campaign for activism website 38 Degrees featuring the then-health secretary Jeremy Hunt, and a TV fundraising campaign for charity Freedom From Torture. Other clients featured on its website include Octopus Energy and Casino.com.

Other was launched by Mother last October to provide an alternative offering to prospective clients. It is led by business leader Paulo Salomao, strategy leader Sarah Oberman, production leader Metz Bryan-Fasano and creative leader Kyle Harman-Turner.

Topics