GKV files $4.3M lawsuit against auto insurer over advertisements
Baltimore Business Journal
You might have seen Elephant Insurance’s TV ads featuring a talking elephant man dressed in a business suit. So did the folks at Baltimore advertising agency GKV, apparently.
GKV has filed a nearly $4.3 million federal lawsuit against Elephant Insurance Services LLC alleging GKV came up with the idea of the auto insurer using the suit-wearing figure with the body of a man and the head of an elephant in the company’s advertising.
The lawsuit alleges that Elephant did not pay GKV. The firm alleges Elephant infringed on GKV’s copyright, misappropriated the agency’s ideas and breached an implied contract to hire GKV as its ad agency. The suit was filed Jan. 16 in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.
GKV seeks $1 million for Elephant’s alleged misappropriation of the elephant-man concept and $3 million in punitive damages. The lawsuit also requests another $250,000 for what GKV said it would have earned had Elephant not allegedly breached an implied contract with ad agency.
Greg Minkler, Elephant’s marketing manager, said the company had no comment.
GKV CEO Roger Gray could not immediately be reached. GKV’s attorney, James Astrachan, of Astrachan Gunst Thomas, P.C. in Baltimore, declined to comment.
Elephant is headquartered in Glen Allen, Va. The company is a division of Admiral Group Plc. a large insurance company based in the United Kingdom.
Elephant Insurance’s advertisements feature an elephant man wearing a suit.