Nevada City energy supplement business returns after 2019 logo opposition from Monster Energy
After receiving a notice of opposition from Monster Energy in 2019 over its logo, Nevada City-based energy supplement brand Monarch Energy has returned to business with a new logo and manufacturer, according to founder Mason McGuire.
Now 22 years old, McGuire first formed the idea for Monarch Energy at age 16, after finding that the use of energy drinks and other caffeinated products was causing him unwanted effects as he dealt with health issues, including arthritis.
Setting out to find a solution, he created a product called Monarch Mints — spearmint-flavored caffeinated chewable tablets — which he currently sells online.
When Monster Energy filed a notice of opposition in 2019, their issue with his previous logo — an all-black design showing the letter “M” inside a circle with wings on either side — was primarily the usage of the letter “M,” according to McGuire. He said this was surprising, as it seemed more likely they would have an issue with his business’ name sounding too similar to theirs.
McGuire said he could not have afforded to go through a legal battle at that time.
In October 2019, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board judged that Monster Energy’s opposition was sustained after McGuire did not file an answer to the notice.
He has filed for a trademark using a new logo, which inside of a diamond shape includes, on the left, three vertical lines, and on the right, three horizontal — configured in a way where McGuire says the design contains “no letters,” but could be interpreted as spelling “M” and “E” for Monarch Energy.
McGuire said he had to seek a new manufacturer for the product last year, early into the COVID-19 pandemic, because his previous one was experiencing such increased success in vitamin production.
Once he had saved up enough money to begin working with a new manufacturer, McGuire worked with a friend’s design business to create new labels, and built up a stock of 3,000 bottles of his product.
He currently runs the business out of an office at 548 Searls Ave. in Nevada City, with a shipping station set up to process online orders, an operation he described as “very, very small.” He added that he is working with a marketing consultant in hopes of increasing sales.
Speaking about the groups he specifically aims to reach with his product, McGuire said the first is those who, like he did years ago, find that consuming other types of caffeinated products is not working well with their health.
The second, said McGuire, is “people who are in the industry of … heavy, laborious work where they don’t have time to sit down and drink coffee or energy drinks, or they don’t want the side effects from those things.”
He gave as an example that someone who works in an emergency services role recently gave him positive feedback about the convenience of his product’s intended timing — the caffeine kicking in within two to five minutes, according to Monarch Energy’s website.
McGuire wrote in an email Monday that his best advice to other new or young entrepreneurs is that they stay persistent.
“The odds may always be against you,” wrote McGuire. “If this is the case, persist. Never give in.”
Victoria Penate is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at email@example.com
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