Disney and Starz Argue Over Star+ Launch


Disney plans to launch its standalone Star+ streaming service in Latin America in August, but Starz has filed complaints in Mexico, Brazil and Argentina alleging that Disney infringes on its brand identity and that the soon-to-launch service will only harm consumers. to confuse.

In an English translation of the complaints seen by The edge and previously reported by the cover, Starz argues that Disney’s “Star Plus” service — which will host content from Disney, FX, 20th Century Studios, and National Geographic, as well as Star originals — is too phonetically similar to its own StarzPlay offering, which is also available in regions where it has filed its complaints.

Starz, a premium cable offering and streaming app, has been operating under the name since the mid-1990s and is now present in 58 countries. Its own service, StarzPlay, has been available in Latin America since 2019. Disney’s Star – a service offered in international markets and nested in Disney Plus – was officially launched in December. Star+, meanwhile, is set to start as a single service in Latin America on August 31.

“Both companies are currently direct competitors in the Mexican market, creating unfair competition, especially if it is assumed that we are talking about the same services,” the suit filed in Mexico said.

A Starz spokesperson, who was asked for comment, said the company had “no choice but to defend its rights and try to avoid further confusion among customers by pursuing trademark infringement lawsuits” in Brazil, Mexico and Argentina against Disney. due to the use of “Star”. and several iterations of the service title.

Disney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The company announced in May that its Star+ service would be officially rolled out to consumers at the end of August. At the time, Diego Lerner, president of The Walt Disney Company Latin America, said in a statement that the service would deliver “a never-before-seen personalized experience.”

“The power of the content, which will span the entire ESPN, makes Star+ a unique and relevant offering with its own identity that will become a recognized digital service independent of Disney Plus,” said Lerner. “That said, its arrival will represent a service complementary to Disney Plus and will consolidate The Walt Disney Company’s presence in the Latin American streaming market.”