Financial products and services company H&R Block (HRB) - Get H&R Block, Inc. Report is taking Jack Dorsey's payment firm Block (SQ) - Get Square, Inc. Class A Report, formerly Square, to court for its new brand name and almost matching logos.
H&R Block has filed a trademark infringement suit in federal court to stop the company from using the name Block and a “nearly identical" green square logo, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing the legal complaint.
Fintech firm Square announced plans to change its name to Block a few weeks back, right as Twitter TWTR and Dorsey parted ways.
H&R Block, which offers assisted income tax return preparation and related services through a system of retail offices, is worried that Block might hurt its hallmark brand and distract its customer base.
“Today’s filing is an important effort to prevent consumer confusion and ensure a competitor cannot leverage the reputation and trust we have built over more than six decades,” H&R Block President and CEO Jeff Jones said in a statement, CNBC reports.
“The goodwill that Block has so carefully created and nurtured over the past six decades is now under attack by a Silicon Valley fintech company,” H&R Block said in the complaint cited in the Journal.
H&R Block was founded by in 1955 by brothers Henry and Richard Bloch. They deliberately chose to "end the company’s name with a “k” because their last name was often mispronounced," the Journal reported.
H&R's complaint argued that Block, "does not have the kind of history or reputation for trust and reliability that [H&R] Block has enjoyed for more than 65 years.”
Square's rebranding is part of the firm's attempt to go beyond merchant payments and pivot into cryptocurrency and the blockchain, areas Dorsey has previously expressed keen interest in.
"Block is a new name, but our purpose of economic empowerment remains the same," Dorsey said in an earlier statement.
Still, part of the company dubbed Square Crypto will change its name to Spiral, although the company will not alter its organizational structure or respective brands.
"We built the Square brand for our seller business, which is where it belongs," Dorsey added.
H&R Block owns U.S. trademark registrations for “H&R Block,” “Blockworks,” “Block Advisors” and other related names but not "Block," the Journal report adds,