Kobe Bryant's estate filed trademarks covering 'virtual experiences' with the Lakers legend in the metaverse

·2 min read
Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bryant.Harry How / Getty Images
  • Kobe Bryant's estate has filed three trademark applications covering "virtual experiences" in the metaverse with the NBA legend.

  • His estate filed paperwork last week to trademark "Kobe Bryant," "Mamba Forever," and "Mambacita."

  • The trademark applications are for a range of "virtual and digital goods," including games and NFTs.

Kobe Bryant's estate has filed three different trademark applications covering "virtual experiences" in the metaverse with the late NBA legend.

The estate of the late Los Angeles Lakers icon filed paperwork on January 28 with the United States Patent and Trademark Office to trademark "Kobe Bryant," "Mamba Forever," and "Mambacita," for a range of "virtual and digital goods," including art, clothing, sporting goods, avatars, toys, games, trading cards and NFTs.

Bryant, who was known as "The Black Mamba," was killed in a helicopter crash in California in January 2020 at the age of 41 alongside his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others.

The filings by Kobe, Inc., which is led by Bryant's widow Vanessa Bryant, are for "virtual and digital interactive representations of Kobe Bryant for use in virtual experiences and the metaverse." (The metaverse is a technology, more or less, similar to a computer-simulated virtual world.)

"Multimedia files, audio recordings, video recordings and image files containing content, artwork, text, audio, and video relating to Kobe Bryant, in each case, stored in digital wallets and authenticated by non-fungible tokens (NFTs)," the filings for "Kobe Bryant" and "Mamba Forever" said.

The filing for "Mambacita," a nickname for his late daughter, is for "virtual and digital interactive representations of Gianna 'Gigi' Bryant for use in virtual experiences and the metaverse," also including NFTs.

Washington-based trademark lawyer Josh Gerben told Bloomberg on Thursday that this was the first trademark of its kind that he has seen on behalf of an NBA star.

"There's been this avalanche of trademark filings from different companies and celebrities to protect their rights as it pertains to things in the metaverse," Gerben told the news outlet.

Bryant started Kobe Inc. in 2013 to have direct control over his business affairs, and it's not the first time that the Bryant family has registered for trademarks under the company.

Bryant's estate has previously registered for trademarks involving footwear, apparel and wine, Bloomberg reported.

Attorney's for Bryant's estate did not immediately respond to a request for comment by Insider on Friday.

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