The iconic Brazilian soccer legend Pelé is suing Samsung Electronics Co. for $30 Million for the use of a lookalike of him in an advertisement that failed to reach an agreement with the soccer superstar in 2013.
The Ultra-definition television advert included the face photo of a “black man that looks really close to Pelé” that ran out the New York Times without the permissions of Edson Arantes do Nascimento (Also known as Pelé).
In 2013 Pelé broke off the negotiation of the use of his identity on an advert of a Samsung television, contained a small photo of a soccer player doing a “modified bicycle or scissor-kick” making an allusion of Pelé, hence both of those techniques were perfected and famously used by him.
Edson Arantes do Nascimento, now 75 years old, has been retired from soccer since 1971 but is a well-known player, called one of the greatest soccer players ever and a worldwide class famous athlete.
The lawsuit filed on March 16th in Chicago, where he claims that Samsung never obtained the rights to use his identity in any matter. A huge part of Pelé’s income is from licensing his name and persona to become a commercial sponsor. Actually, Pelé’s licensed identity is as important to him as playing soccer professionally was to him back in the days.
The goal for Pelé and his lawyer is to obtain a fair enough compensation for the unauthorized use of the image of his client and prevent future unauthorized uses too, and that the Samsung customers don’t believe that the Brazilian retired star is endorsing Samsung products.
Pelé’s lawyer on this case will be the well-known lawyer Frederick Sperling, from the law firm that helped the famous NBA star Michael Jordan on his lawsuit against a grocery store chain that used Jordan’s name and also his iconic No. 23 without his permission in 2009, where they promoted a coupon that was worth $2 off steaks – a low discount for a high-level star, wasn’t it? Jordan was lately awarded about $9 Million in that case.