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Rock in Rio Lisbon threatens to sue Rock in Rio Febras

The 80,000-capacity festival is alleging "misuse of the brand and unfair competition" against a free-to-attend boutique event

By Lisa Henderson on 05 Jul 2023

A capacity crowd at Rock in Rio Lisboa (Lisbon) in 2018

Rock in Rio Lisbon

The company behind Rock in Rio Lisbon has reportedly threatened Rock in Rio Febras with legal action if it does not change its name.

Rock in Rio Lisbon (cap. 80,000), which has taken place in the Portuguese capital since 2014, is alleging “misuse of the brand and unfair competition” against the boutique festival.

Rock in Rio Febras was launched by a “local group of young people” last year in Guimaraes, over 200 miles away, on the banks of the Febras River. The one-day, free-to-attend event featured local rock bands and DJs.

In a post on Facebook, the organisers of Rock in Rio Febras wrote: “We inform you (with a huge smile of pride) that an attentive, responsible and respected law firm in the capital has notified us, on behalf of ROCK WORLD LISBOA, S.A., organiser of Rock in Rio Lisboa (yes, that one), that was aware of the success of Rock in Rio Febras in 2022, and the organisation of the 2023 edition, and fears the confusion that the similarity between the designation of the two events may cause in the unwary citizen. They also accuse us of “unfair competition” (not a joke). In this way, it was strongly suggested that we change the name of the festival, under penalty of being the target of legal action.”

“It was strongly suggested that we change the name of the festival, under penalty of being the target of legal action”

“After consulting our vast team of qualified specialists, legal and otherwise, who accompany the organisation of this event… we decided to comply with the request that was so vigorously made to us. Thus, we have come to announce that the rock festival that takes place on the banks of the Febras River will, from now on, be called “Rock on the Febras River”. Or maybe “Rock near (but not “in”) Rio Febras”. Perhaps “Rock around Rio Febras”.

Rock in Rio Febras is due to return on 22 July under a name yet to be determined. While Rock in Rio Lisbon, sister of the Rio de Janeiro flagship event, will return in June 2024. IQ has reached out to the company behind the mega events for comment.

Earlier this year, Rock in Rio Lisbon’s co-producer Ritmos e Blues was bought by Live Nation.


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