Knight Leach Delaney is accusing Rizla and its agency, Cowing Balmforth
Trendall, of flagrant infringement of copyright and breach of
confidence, and has issued a solicitor’s letter seeking redress.
KLD claims a press and poster campaign, which broke this week, closely
resembles the work the agency presented when it pitched for the pounds 1
million account in August this year.
Lewis Silkin, the ad industry’s leading law firm, has written a letter
on behalf of the agency, asking both Rizla and Cowing Balmforth for an
explanation and seeking recompense and compensation.
According to KLD, the likeness applies to both the media strategy and
the creative execution, which appears in magazines and national press.
The campaign centres on the Rizla packet’s typeface, style and colours,
but with the name Rizla replaced by other words relevant to the sections
in which they appear. In KLD’s version, ‘blues’ crops up in music
sections, ‘premier’ in film pages and ‘chic’ in fashion editorial.
Cowing Balmforth’s version uses different words but an identical
strategy. KLD and the other losing agency, Barkers, have both been
asking for their artwork back since August, but say Rizla has failed to
return the work.