Know the score on Games-related merchandising and promotion.
AS those operating under a premises licence under the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 will be aware, off-sale hours during which alcohol may be sold are restricted to a maximum of between 10am and 10pm each day. Unlike on-sale premises, there will be no scope to apply for later opening for alcohol sale during Games time (23 July to 3 August).
That said, it is likely that retailers will want to run certain promotions to capture additional trade that the Games might bring – for example to cater for customers who are hosting parties during events. With that in mind, licence holders should always remember that the fact that the Games are taking place does not alter the promotion rules which affect off-sale premises.
A promotion cannot: target alcoholic drinks in a way largely to appeal to persons under the age of 18; offer alcoholic drinks free of charge or at a reduced price conditional on the purchase of one of more drinks.
Therefore promotions such as “buy one, get one free” or “three for two” are prohibited and others such as “two for £5” would only be permitted if the individual unit price of each item was £2.50.
It should be remembered that any price changes of any alcoholic products must remain in effect for at least 72 hours.
Off-sale premises can, however, offer alcohol as a prize if it is for consumption off the premises. Therefore if you run customer prize draws around the Games time, then alcohol may be offered as a prize.
However, in relation to the Games, additional regulation applies and must be considered.
The Games Association Right
The organising committee of the Games has, under law, the exclusive right to authorise persons to associate themselves or their products with the Games – that allows it to generate income to help meet the costs of the Games through sponsorship and such like. It also allows it to manage the presentation and image of the Games, to ensure that the greatest benefit for the country is achieved.
Retailers should be aware that any promotion which specifically associates their premises or the products they sell with the Games without express permission from the organising committee is likely to be unlawful.
It is recommended that all steps are taken to avoid breaches of the Games Association Right. Lack of knowledge of the law is not a defence to infringement. The organising committee has placed extensive guidance on its website www.glasgow2014.com.
Around Games time within defined zones street trading and advertising activities are also restricted, to a significant extent, under The Glasgow Commonwealth Games (Trading and Advertising) (Scotland) Regulations 2013. In essence the regulations prohibit unauthorised street trading and advertising – which includes things such as product giveaways, leafleting and many other activities – in defined zones at specified times. There are some exemptions for certain activities, but they are limited. The regulations will be enforced by designated officers, who have extensive powers. Again, detailed guidance is on the Games website.
Games tickets come with terms and conditions which prohibit their use in commercial promotions, such as prize competitions and giveaways.
Over and above any special conditions, existing laws still apply. The name “Glasgow 2014” and the Games logo are registered as trade marks, restricting the ability of people to use them in business. The Games logo also attracts copyright. And making association with the Games without authorisation can constitute passing off.
However, some association is encouraged. In support of the event a Games Tourism Toolkit has been developed by the organising committee in partnership with Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and VisitScotland.
The toolkit contains advice and a range of assets to help tourism businesses play their part in welcoming visitors to Scotland, in the lead up to and during the Commonwealth Games. For more information interested parties should check www.visitscotland.org