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Aycock Engineering, Inc. v. Airflite, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
560 F.3d 1350 (2009)


Facts

William Aycock conceived of a business plan to offer middleman services connecting individuals interested in booking chartered flights and air-taxi companies that offer such services. Over a number of decades, Aycock named the scheme Airflite, formed Aycock Engineering, Inc. (defendant) as a corporate holding entity, and advertised the proposed service to air-taxi companies. Eventually a very small number of air-taxi companies agreed to be included in the scheme, but far fewer than Aycock estimated he would need to operate Airflite. Aycock never advertised or offered the service to the public, nor ever arranged a single flight. In 1970 Aycock filed for and was granted a service mark for Airflite, and renewed the registration in 1994. In 2001, Airflite, Inc. (plaintiff) filed a petition for cancellation of the mark, alleging that Aycock Engineering had not used the Airflite mark in connection with the services listed in the registration. The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the Board) held for Airflite, Inc., holding that Aycock Engineering had failed to render the service described in commerce.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (O’Grady, J.)

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