Thanks to transferability of trademarks, Twinkies likely not gone forever

Now that Hostess has gone out of business, will Naples readers be forever deprived of their Twinkies?

Not likely.

Even though Hostess, the maker of gloriously empty-calorie fare like Ding-Dongs and Zingers, had its financial troubles, some of its trademarked brands (like Twinkies) sold quite well and achieved a certain level of fame. That means those trademarks are likely pretty desirable and will be sold to another company as part of Hostess’ liquidation.

You see, trademarks and other intellectual property assets are transferrable, meaning they can be given away, traded or sold. So, just because Hostess itself is gone doesn’t mean Twinkies themselves are necessarily no more.

We should note, though, that it would be possible for Hostess to sell only the right to call a packaged pastry a “Twinkie.” It may choose not to sell the closely guarded recipe for Twinkies, so tomorrow’s Twinkie may not be the exact same as today’s. (And, of course, it may decide to sell nothing at all.)

Now, underneath all this talk about cream-filled treats, there’s a legal lesson we hope you’re getting. Intellectual property assets can be quite valuable and it would be a shame if your business didn’t act appropriately to secure them.

We understand that intellectual property may not be a concept with which you are all that familiar or comfortable. We work with a lot of business owners who are in the same boat. Because we regularly work with intellectual property matters, like trademark issues, we understand how to help people who aren’t sure where to begin when it comes to protecting their intellectual property assets.

Source: Forbes, “Hostess With The Most-est? No Wonder That These Twinkies Will Not Join The Trademark Graveyard,” Jess Collen, Nov. 16, 2012