While the likes of Amazon haven’t yet elected to wade into the digital currency arena, investors may have been fooled with the presence of Alibabacoin – a cryptocurrency project that is now in hot water for allegedly lifting the name of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba to empower its own marketing.
Alibaba has now filed a lawsuit for trademark infringement through the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, claiming that the cryptocurrency project had ‘misappropriated’ its marque to raise some $3.5 million USD through an ICO.
While the case has not yet been heard, US District Judge Kimba Wood has now filed a temporary restraining order against Alibabacoin, and has requested that the Dubai-based project issue an explanation as to why it should not incur additional infractions.
Paper’s filed by Alibaba’s legal representation allege that Alibabacoin had “engaged in a willful and concerted campaign to cause the public to believe falsely that Alibaba is the source of the Defendants’ products and services, or that such products and services are endorsed or sponsored by, or otherwise associated or affiliated with, Alibaba.”
In a press release filed on March 26th, the Alibabacoin Foundation outlined that its founders “don’t have any particular correlation, affiliate, agreement, partnership, nor any contract whatsoever with Alibaba.com.”
According to Reuters, Alibaba is not only seeking an injunction against the digital currency project, but is further seeking unspecified damages.
While Alibaba itself has not launched a proprietary digital currency, the firm has proceeded to issue its own cryptocurrency mining platform.
Further abroad, it remains to be seen if other Asian e-commerce giants would proceed to launch their own cryptocurrency ventures. Earlier this year, Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten has announced that it is seeking to launch its own cryptocurrency dubbed Rakuten Coin.